Hello Vets,

In the Bleat this week;

  • Narrabundah Track Practice Session
  • Racing this Week 
  • Race Reports
  • From the Race Committee

Please send me your contributions at: TheBleat@actvets.cc

Russell Marston (standing in for Ian Morton)

The club has been monitoring the developments of AusCycle. More to follow in upcoming Bleats.

In addition, details regarding membership for October – December 2019 period and 2020 will be in upcoming Bleats.

This Saturday’s handicap race at Dog Trap Rd is the last race of the Winter Road Season. With plenty of points up for grabs, including 20 pts for first place and 5 points for fastest time.  Who will ultimately win the men’s and women’s Winter Point score? A few weeks ago it looked like Steve Crispin had men’s first place wrapped up but Gerard Tiffen has made a surge in recent weeks, in the absence of Steve, to now be leading.  If both riders turn up on Saturday it could go down to the wire!  In the women’s point score both Kirsti McVay and Linda Stals have 56 points with Liz Lowe on 50 points so first place is definitely not settled for the girls either.

The current three top rankings are:


Gerard Tiffen              135

Steve Crispin               132

Ross Robinson            98


Kirsti McVay              52

Linda Stals                  52

Elizabeth Lowe            50

Click on the following link to see where you stand in the Winter Point score rankings.


Summer Daylight Saving Time (DST) commences on 6th October which heralds the start of the criterium and track seasons. Criterium racing at Stromlo Forest Park commences on Tuesday 8th October and track racing at the Narrabundah Track (Velodrome) on Wednesday 9th October (See below).

From the Desk of the Handicapper

NSW Masters’ Championships

Coffs Harbour was the venue for the road and criterium components of the masters’ championships over the weekend. The club’s TT aficionados were spared the long drive with the race of truth conveniently being held at Gunning a few weeks ago. This split resulted in me being the ACT’s only representative among the 190 entrants, but I was joined by Newcastle-based Vets member Keith Harris.

The RR was 3 laps of a scenic 21-km circuit encompassing parts of the old Pacific Highway and a small loop around a rural neighbourhood. It was a great course and there was plenty of aggression on the hills but then lulls for the bigger guys to get back on–a bit like A Vets grade race. I thought there’d be fireworks on the last major hill but things were quite calm except for my own horror with the discovery that my legs had packed up for the day. I managed somehow to hang on to the bunch for the uphill sprint and picked up about one position to finish 12th. Ahead of me, Keith got tangled up with another rider, skillfully stayed upright and placed 5th.

The crit course was a 1km square in the centre of town. The lure of old guys and gals in a crit race certainly didn’t bring out the locals on a sunny Sunday so hopes of riding through a mass of humanity were quickly dashed. The M6 race started with a string of attacks mainly on the wind-aided home straight, but this meant it was possible to get back on when the protagonists hit the head wind on the other side. There were other times when the pace really slowed and we all fanned across the road. Thirty minutes of interval training passed quickly and suddenly it was three laps to go but the desire to get to the pointy end of the bunch was somewhat overwhelmed by the legs and lungs declaring they’d had enough. Keith showed more spirit, bolting out of the pack with two to go to join another rider who unfortunately didn’t have much to contribute. He had a handy lead at the bell but was swallowed by the bunch as he battled the headwind. The bunch was down to about 10 riders as we passed the front of Coles for the last time and I managed 8th in the end with Keith just behind.

Next year’s championships will be at the same location. It will be worth a trip to escape Canberra’s chilly spring weather, and on the this topic I noticed that the mini tour dished up another shocker of a day!

Rob Langridge



Daylight saving will soon be with us, and that means VETS TRACK RACING!!!!!

The track racing season will kick off with a Practice Sessionstarting at 6.00pmon Wednesday 9 October.  There will be no racing.  All interested riders are invited – particularly new riders and track novices. It is a great opportunity to give track a try!

Please note that Narrabundah Track is a high-banked, oval track suitable only for conventional fixed gear track bikes with a high bottom bracket. We are unable to accommodate road bikes on this track.


+ Narrabundah track is located off Goyder Street in Narrabundah;

+ We welcome riders to try a high-banked track for the first time;

+ New riders can get practical advice on gearing, bunch riding & track etiquette;

+ Interested riders can try out a track bike (bring your own pedals and shoes);

+ Experienced riders can tune up the machinery & motor;

+ All riders can express their preference for events & races;

+ The practice session will be around 1hr 30 mins starting at 6.00pm;

+ There is no formal structure to the practice. We can assist with introductory training, if requested;

+ You can do your own thing, if you prefer.

A few basics on track etiquette for the practice session:

+ Use the designated track positions for cruising, tempo or fast pacing;

(The faster you ride the higher you should be positioned on track.  Overtake outside other riders);

+ Hold your line – don’t make changes of speed or position unless you are clear of other riders;

+ Be very careful if you are crossing or moving on / off the track;

(It is your responsibility not to impede other riders in this situation);

+ Start from the fence and be aware of riders approaching;

+ It is best to wear clear or light tinted goggles;

(the shaded portions of track have very low visibility with regular sunnies);

+ All riders will need to be cautious, as there will be novice riders at the practice session.

Regular track racing will start on Wednesday 16 October.

Last year was a great season with a dedicated track group and 30 riders participating over the season.  However, why should they have all the fun.  If you have thought about it, come and give it a try.  We would like at least ten more regulars.

Graeme O’Neill


Saturday, 28th September: Dog Trap Rd Murrumbateman Handicap

Where: Turn off Barton Highway at Long Rail Gully Road, or sealed access from Yass River Road.
When: 1:30 pm.
Sign on:15 mins before scheduled start time wearing your registered number.
Race Description:
Dog Trap Road – 2 laps.

Race Director: RicoFitch(rico.fitch@gmail.com), 0422893517

Marshals: David Dickson, Warwick Wilson, David Johnson, Stjepan Hirsler, John Stokman


Breadalbane, Graded Stage Race – 21st September

19 riders converged on the picturesque town of Breadalbane for our penultimate road race of 2019. A 20-kilometre time trial followed by a 50-kilometre road race.

Not being content with the bad weather encountered at the previous Breadalbane scratch race in August, the riders had watched the forecast for the preceding days hoping for strong winds, rain squalls, and arduous conditions. They were not to be disappointed.

Individual Time Trial

Timed to coincide perfectly with the arrival of the storm front, the first riders rolled into a strong North Westerly crosswind for the start of the time trial.

In A grade, Gerard Tiffen rode a scorching race on his new TT rig setting the fastest time on the day of 30:15. We were left wondering what could have been if Roger Northcote hadn’t run out of petrol some kilometres outside of Breadalbane and burned his matches racing the clock to make the start line. He took second place. Third place went to Brendan Byatt who had decided to make his race more challenging by using his road bike.

Owain Tilley applied the power in consistently strong fashion to take the fastest time in B grade. Bruce Goodfellow followed in 2nd.

C grade saw Michael Fawke, Peter Young, and Ian McVay finish in that order.

Anthony Beasley, as the only rider in D grade, rode a strong race and set a time that would have seen him in the top three in the grade above.

In E grade Penelope Anderson and Simon Milnes were well matched and tied for first place. Russell Marston placed third.

Polly Templeton rounded out the finishers in the time trial and took the honours in F grade.

Meanwhile, Roger used the break between races to ride back to his car and swap his TT bike for his roadie.

Road Race

With the first of two rain fronts in the offing, Polly Templeton rolled away in F grade and after making the far turn and climbing the range, caught the worst of the weather and opted to take a ride back with the follow car.

A and B grades were combined for a bunch of 8 riders. A stayed together until a series of attacks on the return trip up the range saw it come apart. Heath Wade attacked the climb and was allowed some leeway before Brendan made a counter, with Gerard following on his wheel. Brendan and Gerard reeled Wade in and passed him in short order. Seymour and Paul gave chase, dropped Roger, and soon caught Wade. In the finish, Gerard out sprinted Brendan for the road race and took the overall win by just over two minutes. Finishing together, Wade outsprinted Seymour and Paul for 3rd place.

B grade stayed with A until the first decent off the range. In the final, Bruce took line honours and finished well clear of Owain. The gap wasn’t sufficient to overcome the time deficit from the TT, and Owain retained the overall win by a margin of over two minutes.

C and D were combined for a total of 5 riders but had split within the first few kilometres. C grade saw a bunch finish, with Michael Fawke managing to out sprint Ian McVay and Peter Young. Michael took the maximum time bonus and claimed the overall win by more than a minute.

Tony Beasley found the C grade pace too hot and was dropped early in the fierce crosswinds. He was caught by E grade halfway out and was able to recover in the relative shelter they provided. Tony found his legs on the return climb and rode away from E grade to make a solo finish, taking the D grade win.

E grade was the most closely contested of the day, with the fast-finishing straight providing the perfect setting for a tactical sprint for the line. Simon Milnes and Russell Marston (2nd and 3rd) were out powered and manoeuvred by Penelope Anderson who crossed the line first and sealed the overall win with a margin of just eight seconds.

Thanks to Graham Handie, Terry Merrigan, Rowan McMurray, Alex Sommariva and Marc Vroomans for running the race.

Results are in the RMS but only overall times can be shown. For more details, see the following link to the club web site.

A final mention to Seymour for driving Roger back to his car and confirming a special delivery of fuel was en route before heading home himself.

Rainer Wilton


Upcoming Marshal Roster

Thank you to those who have already volunteered to help. Nominees, in blue have been selected based on results from the previous race season and the period since they last helped at a race. Nominees are requested to advise their availability/unavailability to the race committee (race.committee@actvets.cc) as soon as possible.

Summer series crit races are held at Stromlo Forest Park on Tuesday evenings and road races are held on Sunday mornings.


Date Event Director Marshals
08-Oct Crit Mark Harris
Paul Delmenico
15-Oct Crit Michael Reppion
Travis Hicks
20-Oct Corin Alain Arbaut
1 (finish chute) david wilson
22-Oct Crit Christophe Barberet
Michelle Hodgetts
29-Oct Crit Daniel Grillo
David Gillies
03-Nov Uriarra Brian Peak
4 (finish chute & 3 ETCs) Seymour Savell-Boss*, Neil Burton*, Lindsay Graham* Christopher Hodgson
05-Nov Crit Susan Frost
Felipe Lopes Reis
10-Nov Sutton Driver Training Centre Bryan Holloway
1 (finish chute) Stuart Roesler
12-Nov Crit Kevin Newhouse
Liam O’Dea
17-Nov Old Federal Highway Ian Preston
4 (2 drivers, finish chute & 1 turn marshals) Peter Kitchen, Ben McDuff, Gai Monahan Brandie O’Connor
19-Nov Crit Christophe Barberet
Belinda Chamberlain
24-Nov Uriarra Lewis Cressy
4 (finish chute & 3 ETCs) Terry Moore*, Robert Brunato*, Mick Donaldson*, Jeremy Ross
26-Nov Crit Wayne Benham
Sam Whitsed
01-Dec Old Federal Highway John Thorn
5 (2 drivers, finish chute & 2 turn marshals) Mark K Taylor, Tim Minehan, Darren Garnon, Polly Templeton, James Curran
03-Dec Crit Tony Rowley
David McCook
08-Dec Dairy Road Nick Boylan
1 (finish chute), Tim Brown
10-Dec Crit Steve Dean
Andrew Murrell
15-Dec Majura Bradley Peppinck
1 (finish chute) Des Brown
17-Dec Crit Jonathan Chowns
Michael Golding


* denotes ETC required for ACT races.

Ian McVay
Race Committee