A small but enthusiastic crowd turned up today for the first Empire Vale Road Race of the calendar. With the Commonwealth Games Road Race for competition, we were never going to have a large field, but Blue skies, a little mud in the middle and the ever-present South Ballina wind made for an enjoyable afternoon of racing.
The racing was tight in D & E Grades thanks to the Handicapping which saw 5 Riders fighting for the line at the end of 2 Laps. With Cameron Johnston Narrowly edging out Bruce Quinn for 1st Place with David Cowdery filling the 3rd step of the Podium.
Ben Hogan was the only rider in C Grade and set off to chase the D & E Grade riders down but this proved too much for him despite a strong solo ride and a great effort.
A & B Grades had just two riders each and while it was a contest of Strength in B Grade with Ritchie Duncan (BBC) emerging the victor over Gold Coast rider , it was all about tactics and cunning in A Grade. Liam Bartuzzi tried several times to shake Connor Gibney of his wheel in the last 3 km but Connor was like a limpet, finally breaking into a sprint of his own in the last 600 metres to cross the line a couple of bike lengths clear.
Thanks to all the riders who made it out. Thanks also to the Volunteers for taking the time to allow us to race.