Criterium racing in Rockingham

Theo Yates (centre) sprinting hard for the win in A grade.         Picture: Nick CowieFive A grade breakaway riders (white caps) pass B grade. Picture: Richard Williamson
Criterium racing in Rockingham
Criterium racing in Rockingham
Criterium racing in Rockingham
Theo Yates (centre) sprinting hard for the win in A grade.         Picture: Nick CowieFive A grade breakaway riders (white caps) pass B grade. Picture: Richard Williamson

CRITERIUM racing returned to the centre of Rockingham, with the Peel District Cycling Club racing a modified Smeaton Way circuit on Sunday morning.

The change from the circuit that had be raced for the past few seasons was the inclusion of Beale Way, adding two more corners to the circuit and making the turn on to Smeaton Way safer.

Eleven juniors took to the 1.6km circuit with chaperones. The youngest riders rode one circuit and the older riders completed two laps.

On the first lap of E grade, the bunch split. Over the next two laps the composition of the two groups changed, as a rider was dropped from the front group and another rider managed to bridge across.

From there, the front three managed to extend their lead, with Todd Brown sprinting for the win, Ashton Sime second and Mark Maxwood third.

D grade was racing for 30 minutes and a lap and within five minutes, it became apparent that it was going to be a race of attrition. Six riders were left on the last lap.

Richard Ramos gave his new heart valve a good test and his impressive sprint won the race and promotion to C grade. Dave Simmons finished second and Emma Lundrum third.

In C grade, it was a long bunch sprint won by Aron Barclay with Kelana Saleh second and Daniel Adams third.

In comparison, B grade saw repeated attacks, with one or two riders able to establish a break before being brought back. With a little over two laps to go, two riders attacked and while his companion quickly faltered, Luke Bate managed to stay away to take the solo victory.

In the bunch sprint for the minor places, it was Kurt Harmer finishing second and Adam Jones third.

A grade was the largest field of the day with 29 riders and it was aggressive early, with riders trying to establish a break.

None could and in the end it was a bunch sprint finish, won by Theo Yates, with Conor Sherwin second and Thomas Perry third.

Under-17s rider Tyler Lindorff impressed many onlookers, finishing fourth ahead of more senior riders.

Next Sunday, the racing heads to Kwinana Motorplex, a favourite of novices and parents of juniors, as the circuit is closed to all other traffic.