Mountain bikers attempt to master Codgers
Story by: Andrew Scott - NMBC - Photo by: Marc Palmano / Shuttersport
102 signed on and took to the slippery Codgers tracks at the Masters Mountainbike Cross Country and Nelson Mountainbike Club race 1 on Sunday.
The club presented a genuine multi-lap cross country course, single track descents with technical aspects and a variety of terrain to climb on. Local knowledge played a large part in the results with many visitors struggling with the nature of the course that the locals take for granted.
The course coped well with 20 young speedsters and the masters lapping at the same time. A variety of age, speed and skill was on show with New Zealand-selected rider Tom Filmer producing the fastest lap in 15min 31s, winning the U19 men with Jake Glover 2nd and Peter Crampton 3rd.
At the other end of the spectrum Keith Broadhead of Wanaka, aged 74, took gold ahead of his old rival Frank Johanasson, aged 75, of Golden Bay who had an incident-filled day with many crashes.
He wasn’t the only one. Local hero George Bennett retired after a technical dismount on Andrew’s Link track.
George Bennett suffered a technical dismount on the Andrew's Link track
Dean Fulton continued his battle with Tom Filmer from the Cycle Festival Urban XC race, with Dean coming second to Tom this time, but winning the 30-39 year men’s category. The Masters 30-39 gold medal went to Mark Fry, with Ross Moore silver and Greg Buckett bronze.
The field of twenty five 50-59 year men was the largest. Local legends Derek Milne took gold, Patrick Meffan silver, and Wayne Leighton bronze. The intensity of Derek’s pace gave him a time that would have placed him second behind Jake Stow who won gold in the 40-49 men. Jake was followed in by Cliff Bowman silver and Mike Anderson 3rd. Andy MacDonald took the bronze masters medal as Mike was racing as part of the local series only.
Leigh-Ann Champion took gold in a good field of 40-49 year women. Sarah Plum, new to cross country racing, took 2nd from a very experienced Julie Slade who came out of retirement for bronze.
The fastest woman of the day, pro-elite rider Eloise Fry, flew around the course with a 19 min 35s fastest lap to collect gold in the 30-39 year women. Silver went to Alicja Maslowska.
Veteran Jane Rose also came out of retirement to finish with a time that would have given her gold in the 40-49 as well as her own 50-59 category. Sue Heydon took silver, Liz Eskrick in the 60-69 women produced a stunning ride to finish her 2 laps quicker than the first two laps of both Jane and Leigh-Ann in the two age groups below. She went on to do an extra lap with her friends in the spirit of the event.
SI Masters medallists Jeff Long (S), Bryce Buckland (G) and John Pickering (B)
In the 60-69 codgers class, Alan Eskrick battled and beat Bryce Buckland who came back from a heavy crash to take the gold medal as Alan was racing for local honours only. Jeff Long took silver ahead of Picton codger John Pickering bronze, who put in some time during the week mastering the course.
Other results were U17 women Caitlin Holmes 1st, Olivia Miller 2nd. U15 men Scott Barr 1st, DJ Holmes 2nd, Remus Courtenay 3rd. U17 men Andrew Read 1st, Henry Jaine 2nd, Jacob Anderson 3rd. Ingrid Richter won the senior women. Full results are on the club website at http://www.nelsonmountainbikeclub.org.nz/