Benchmark Homes 8 - Round Seven
Lowe & Associates Accountants Trophy at Rangiora, Saturday, 15th September 2007
Olympian Hayden Roulston (Tinwald) scored his third win of the 2007 Benchmark Homes 8 elite road cycling series last Saturday when he won the 145km Lowe & Associates Accountants Trophy at Rangiora.
Near perfect conditions again greeted the 86 strong-field for the penultimate round of the series where most interest would be in whether Joe Chapman (Harty's Lowe & Associates) could close the seven-point deficit on series leader Paul Odlin (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team).
As soon as the red flag was lowered at the end of the neutralized section, the attacks came thick and fast with disregard to the distance and terrain that lay ahead. No one breakaway gained anymore than perhaps a one hundred metre lead as the pace of the race remained at 55 60km/hr.
An intact field began the first obstacle of the day, Summerhill at kilometre 25 where US-based professional Aaron Tuckerman rode hard out of the saddle that created the first significant break of the day. Joining Tuckerman over the summit were Glen Rewi, Scott Wilder, and Alasdair Duncan (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team); Marc Ryan and Chris Karton (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team); Neil Sutherland (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team); and Darren Shea (Papanui). Chapman saw the significance of the move and bridged the gap alone after the descent.
This group rode ahead of the peloton with a lead teetering at 10 - 15 seconds as it approached the climb of German Road. Perhaps sensing the move would fail, Tuckerman dropped back to the peloton as Andrew Williams (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) replaced him up front.
Turning towards Oxford at the crest of the climb, the 9-man break was reduced to eight when Chapman sat up to wait for his team-mates as the breakaway pushed on. Passing through the Oxford township five kilometres later, the lead stretched to 1 minute 15 seconds as the peloton appeared to call a temporary truce after a hectic first hour of racing.
Around the narrow twisting roads of View Hill the lead extended to 2 minutes 35 seconds before Roulston and Reon Park (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) escaped the main field to hunt down the leaders themselves.
As Park posed a threat to Chapman's second place in the series points standing, Chapman's team from Harty's - Lowe & Associates assembled at the head of the peloton and gave chase. The pace of the race saw the main field splintering under pressure as it pursued Roulston and Park as they in turn pursued the leaders ahead of them.
Passing Oxford for the second time at the 70 kilometre mark, the chasing duo made contact with the front to lend the leaders more firepower.
The Harty's Lowe & Associates team continued its chase as it brought the initial two and half minute gap down to 15 seconds on the approach to the second ascent of Summerhill at 90 kilometres. When it appeared the leaders would be recaptured on the hill itself, a crash in the main field brought down three riders that disrupted the chase.
Roulston rode strongly on the climb to re-build the breakaway's lead as only Ryan, Park, Williams, and Rewi could go with him. The splintered peloton reformed after the descent of Summerhill, however the leaders quickly extended their lead to a minute, then two.
On the climb of German Road with 40 kilometres to the finish, Roulston applied pressure on his companions and rode clear. Rewi was dropped leaving the remaining trio the task of pursuing the lone leader all the way to Rangiora.
Behind, series leader Odlin and Under 23 leader Daniel Barry (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) slipped the field climbing out of Ashley Gorge to begin their own hunt for the riders ahead. They soon picked up Rewi who was able to lend his support to the chase.
Roulston rode superbly as his lead stretched to a minute on his pursuers, and held nearly all of that advantage as he crossed the line alone at Rangiora to win his second round in succession. Park led home Ryan and Williams at 50 seconds, as Odlin finished next ahead of the Benchmark Homes duo a minute further back.
Sam Horgan (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) and Jonathon Gee (Papanui) escaped the peloton inside the final 10 kilometres only to be mowed down on the line where Horgan narrowly held off Hayden Godfrey's (Pegasus) charge at the head of the main field.
As with all the women finishers, Annaliisa Farrell (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) rode courageously to finish first woman home, whilst Katri Laike (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) did just enough to take the women's leader jersey off the shoulders of Farrell's team-mate Tracy Clark.
Benchmark Homes Cycling Team had a good day out to win the Team prize for the fifth time this series and retain its lead in the Team classification.
The eighth and final round is the 3rd Noret Grand Prix on Saturday, October 13th at Oxford.
- Hayden Roulston (Tinwald) 145km in 3hrs 28mins 12secs
- Reon Park (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) at 50secs
- Marc Ryan (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) same time
- Andrew Williams (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) st
- Paul Odlin (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) at 1min 55secs
- Daniel Barry (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) st
- Glenn Rewi (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) st
- Sam Horgan (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) at 3mins 02secs
- Hayden Godfrey (Pegasus) st
- Jonathon Gee (Papanui) st
Series Points Standing (Provisional);
- Paul Odlin (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) 102 points
- Reon Park (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) 83pts
- Joe Chapman (Harty's Lowe & Associates) 81pts
- Hayden Roulston (Tinwald) 75pts
- Daniel Barry (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team/U23) 72pts
- Marc Ryan (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) 64pts
- Brian Fowler (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team/Over 40) 59pts
- Glenn Rewi (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) 57pts
- Michael Kingan (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) 40pts
- Steve Elden (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) 39pts
1 Katri Laike (Kelford Reiker Cycling Team) 42 points
2 Tracy Clark (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) 42pts
3 Annaliisa Farrell (Laurie Dawe Cycling Team) 36pts
4 Donna Sibley (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) 21pts
5 Laura Thompson (Benchmark Homes Cycling Team) 12pts
1. Benchmark Homes Cycling Team
The Papanui Cycling Club Inc.
Ph 021 599921