The race returns as the weather clears

PODIUM: Fastest time Matthew Opperman, second place Bruce McLaughlin, winner Jen Buckland, third place John De Pree. Pictures: SENT

AFTER bad weather postponed the Alex Bailey Memorial last weekend, 15 riders have signed up for the next race on the Mount Gambier Cycling Club calendar this weekend.

The 30km run on an out and back course along Atamurra Road featured a strong headwind on the start and a tailwind for the return trip.

The first group of runners to leave included Bruce McLaughlin, Jen Buckland and Jason Buckland, followed six minutes later by Mike Bakker, John De Pree and Troy Mustey.

Dean Zeven and Elmer Buckland had four more minutes to go, followed three minutes later by Patrick Langsmith and Phil Stasiw.

The penultimate group, just a minute later, was made up of Gerard Coote and Riley Hill, before the fastest group of Matthew Opperman, Jami Buckley and Craig Andrae began the chase three minutes later.

The headwind on the way out made the start difficult as each of the groups tried to maintain their pace in front of the pursuers.

By the time the runners returned home, fatigue in their legs meant some weren’t able to pick up the pace as much as others.

Up front, Jen Buckland and McLaughlin tried to maintain their lead, while being chased by Bakker and De Pree.

In the end, it was the final sprint, with Buckland for the win, ahead of McLaughlin, followed by De Pree and Bakker.

Opperman set the fastest time.

The club will now have another racing break for the school holidays, before a 25km race on the familiar Caves Road course on October 23.

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