It was a day for World Champions in Wairarapa on Saturday for race two of the Trust House North Island Series.
World Junior Champions Regan Gough from Waipukurau and Palmerston North Luke Mudgway finish first and second in the men’s elite of the Trust House North island series after a very aggressive race around the Masterton, Carterton and South Wairarapa region in near perfect weather.
It was to be a relatively flat terrain that greeted the cyclist racing from Masterton to Martinborough and back with distances of 142km for the elite riders and 95km for masters and women riders.
Riders on the Men’s elite were the first to go and the action started almost straight away with a few attacks but controlled by the stronger teams in the first 20-30km.
With 43km to go a group of fifteen riders broke clear of the pack and with all teams represented in the break, the peloton was happy to let them go. Their advantage quickly grew to three minutes with riders in the front bunch of 15 gradually going backwards due to the fast pace set up by World Champions Gough and Mudgway, Fraser Cough and international Gordon McCauley.
With ten kilometres to go the leader group was of only six riders containing Regan Gough, Luke Mudway, Pro rider Sam Morgan, Wellington Handy Hagan, Fraser Cough and race leader Gordon McCauley, the six riders worked well to sharing the work load for the break to succeed, until five km to go when they started attacking each other.
New Zealand Professional Sam Morgan was the first to have a go and after a series of attacks from other riders, Regan Gough took off at the one km mark to win the sprint by two seconds from Luke Mudgway from Hastings with Gordon McCauley coming in third place.
McCauley still led the series and was happy with his result. “Coming third today after such a hard race show me that I am in good form and stoked to be in the break mixing it up with World Champions” he said.
The main bunch finished eleven minutes behind.
Race organisers Jorge Sandoval congratulate the young guns in the race “Wairarapa in general don’t get to see many world champions here other than in cycling events. To have two of the “young guns” here today is great and a credit to our sponsors Trust House whose support enable us to stage these type of event in the region”
“With over 200 riders plus supporters, family members etc, coming to the Wairarapa, we provide a bonus for the economic impact of the city with most of them arriving here a day or two before the event. I think our region is doing the right thing to become the cycling destination of New Zealand” Sandoval said.
The field in the Men Masters was made up of 102 riders who stayed together most of the race until strong cross winds in the Longbush area forced the bunch to break into a few small groups.
Many riders tried really hard to get back to the front bunch but didn’t succeed with a 32 strong group managing to break away to contest the bunch finish. At the finish it was Stephen Sheldrake from the East Coast Velo team who took line honors with Peter Murphy from the Meo GP Racing Team in second place and Stuart Holder from Signature Homes Cycling in third place.
Masterton riders Ben Knight and Dave Sheppard from Tararua Builders team manage to finish with the leading bunch and Lawrence Kent was the first rider home from the Trust House team.
In the women’s grade, race one winner Kerry Anne Page probed again to be the strongest women in the race winning in a sprint finish from Phoebe Treseder and Lydia Rippon.
Race Three is in two weeks time; riders complete seven laps of the Carrington circuit in Carterton on Saturday 1st of November.