Ararat velodrome cycling season underway

Riders in D grade lined up for scratch race- left/rear to right/front Murray Culling, Lara Argall, Chandler Culph and Alex Van Opstal.ARARAT – Ararat and District Cycling Club held its first meeting for the velodrome season in warm weather with four competitors in each of the divisions.
Nanjing Night Net

Sabayah Woods snatched the fastest time in the first E grade event, the 250 metre lap dash. In the two lap scratch race, Lara van Opstal beat sister Sophia to the line with new rider Will McDade third and Woods fourth. McDade adapted quickly to track conditions and fired up for a win in one of the later handicap races.

Chandler Culph, moving up to a higher age group, held a strong lead in the 750 metre D grade handicap race, but was chased down in the final 100 metres by Lara Argall, who won just ahead of Murray Culling.

Culling has made a comeback after two months injury but looks in top form. In the five lap scratch race Alex van Opstal took first with Argall second.

Jordie Argall looked confident in the five lap B grade scratch race, taking the lead in the final two laps, but could not shake free of pursuer Brian Howlett, who gained the upper hand in the final straight with an impressive turn of speed.

Kevin Grellet held on at the front of the five lap handicap, but was passed by Jordie Argall and Alice Culling in lap four, settling for third place.

Argall and Culling are presently intensifying training, with Alice due to participate in the Australian Junior Track Series at the end of this month.

Chris Kennett had the lead in lap four of the five lap A grade scratch race, but finished second to Matt Denham, and was followed by Todd then Alan Satchell.

Todd Satchell attempted to take the 14 lap scratch race with an attack in lap 13 which opened a 40 metre lead, and Denham gave chase, sounding like a steam train as his carbon wheel rims conducted the pedal strokes to the track surface, crossing the finish line only a half wheel behind the winner Satchell.

The second race meet held on Saturday was followed by presentations for the 2013 road season, while racing will change to Friday evenings from November 15.

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