ACT Veterans Cycling Club

Hello Vets,

In the Bleat this week;

•  ACTVCC Evaluation Survey: We want to hear from you

•  Race support needed

•  Marshal Swap

•  From the Desk of the Handicapper

•  COVID-19 Restrictions

•  Racing this Week

•  Race Reports

Ian Morton

ACTVCC Evaluation Survey: We want to hear from you

Thank-you to the many people who have already completed this survey over the last week. If you haven’t yet completed the survey, we would be grateful if you could take 5-10 minutes to do so. The survey is for current Vets members (including those not racing), former Vets members, and other cyclists in the ACT and surrounding region aged 30 and over who are interested in cycle-racing, including members of other cycling clubs. This will help to identify how we can better engage with our membership and the broader cycle-racing community.

Responses are anonymous and we value your feedback and thoughts. The findings will assist us to identify what works well and where we can improve, and will support the Committee to make informed decisions to respond to the needs and interests of members. We have engaged an external evaluator to help us with this work.

Access the survey here:

The survey closes on Wednesday 25 November 2020.For more information about the evaluation activities, visit the ACTVCC website:

Race support needed

The club is extremely lucky to have Graham Hendrie looking after, and bringing out to races, our race van. Graham also manages the timing and results recording and uploading into RMS. This operates like a pro rider, very smooth looking but a lot of hard work going on.

Graham is looking to take a break from marshal duties, so we need to start looking at transitioning some of the tasks that he does to other people. This could be a member of the club, a family member or someone who has spare time and an interest in cycling. If you are interested in helping out, or know someone who would be, please get in touch with the race Committee.

Remember, it’s up to everyone in the club to help ensure we continue to have a viable ongoing race program.

Marshal Swap

Des Brown is unavailable for his rostered Marshalling on Sunday 6 December. He is looking to swap with anyone for another event except 1st or 8th December

He can be contacted on 0405 925 828.

From the Desk of the Handicapper

Did you know?

Rory Sutherland has retired after 20 years in the peloton. Rory was born in Canberra and raced locally early on in his career. His career is summarised in the attachment from Velofacts. Highlights from Wikipedia included podium finishes in the nationals RR and TT, top 10 in the Tour of California and 9 grand tour finishes. According to the RMS, and not mentioned in Wikipedia, current member Michael Payne rode the fastest time in a joint handicap with the Vets and Canberra Cycling Club in November 2005 and beat Rory! Perhaps Michael, Steve Blackburn, Mark Harris or Dave Hennessy who were also there can shed some light on this surprising event.

With the departure of Rory and the retirement of Gracie Elvin, the number of Canberrans in the pro peloton continues to unfortunately dwindle.

ACT Veterans Cycling Club


This weeks handicaps;
Carmine Spagnoletti C to B road
Des Brown D to C road
Keiran Butler B to A crit

Rob Langridge

COVID-19 Restrictions

There are legal requirements in place for people returning to the ACT from Victoria and particular places in New South Wales to self-quarantine.

Members who have been to any of these locations in the past 14 days should be complying with ACT Government quarantine restrictions.

Members should stay home if you have been feeling unwell or showing symptoms of COVID-19 or been in contact with someone who has felt unwell in the past 2 weeks.


Tuesday, 17th November: Stromlo Criterium

Where: Stromlo Forest Park
Sign on: 15 mins before scheduled start time wearing your registered number.
Race Description:
E/F/G 5:50 20 min + 2 laps
A/C 6:25 A 38m+2, C 33m+2
B/D 7:05 B 38m+2, D 33m+2

Race Director:  Kevin Newhouse Contact: Email:    Ph  0417 132 213

Marshals: Ron Parker

Wednesday, 18th November: Track Racing

The Program for Wednesday is;
5.30pm – 6.00pm: Warm-up and free practice;
6.00pm – 6.20pm: 8-lap graded scratch race;
6.20pm – 6.50pm: Graded 200m fly;
6.50pm – 7.10pm: 10-lap snowball;
7.10pm – 7.30pm: Italian pursuit.

Sunday, 15th November: Uriarra Homestead – Time Trial – Graded

Note: This Sunday’s race at Uriarra is a graded time trial over 40km. In order to give those without the mega budget to afford a topflight TT rig a better chance, we are going to allow a 2 minute time discount for standard road configurations. To qualify for the bonus you must have no aero kit, i.e. no disc wheel or wheels > 25cm rim depth; aero helmet; one-piece suit, over boots, TT specific aero frame, or aero bars. Qualifying is at the discretion of the race director.

ps. Don’t forget Sunday’s race is pre-entry or cash on the day.

Where: Assemble at Uriarra Rd / Brindabella Rd, T-Junction. From North Canberra slightly faster Coppins crossing & right onto Uriarra Road. From Sth Canberra follow Cotter Road down to bridge crossing, turn right onto Brindabella Road.
When: 9:00 am.
Sign on: 15 mins before scheduled start time wearing your registered number
Race Description:
Two laps of Uriarra Homestead – top of Crossing – Short turn – Homestead. Plus Homestead – top of Uriarra Crossing – Homestead.

Race Director:  Brian Peak Contact: Email:    Ph 0424 403 696

Marshals: Ed Logue ETC, Robert Miller ETC, Frank O’Sullivan ETC, Jeremy Gillman-Wells


Track Racing – 11th November

Wednesday 11 November saw the fifth track racing session for the 2020-21 season. Weather conditions were excellent for racing. It was warm with a fresh breeze creating a headwind in the back straight. Attendance was good with 19 riders, 11 in A grade and 8 in B grade.

The 8-lap A grade scratch race started at an easy pace that increased as the laps ticked off. John Paul De Sousa and Dougal Torrance led the initial laps. Craig Kentwell raised the pace a notch when he rolled to the front. He and Ben Davis gained a small lead over the pack which began to string out. On lap 5 Michael Langdon put in attack with Wayne Benham in pursuit. Michael and Wayne gained a 5 metre gap before Steve Jones and Dave Mullins sensed the danger and set out in pursuit. As the bell lap approached, a group comprising Wayne Benham, Michael Langdon, Steve Jones and Dave Mullins had a gap on the field. Steve Jones proved strongest in the sprint taking first place from Michael Langdon and Dave Mullins in that order.

The B Grade scratch race was quite orderly for the first six laps. Phil Coulton, Alison Hale, Ian Drayton, Ken Birch and Phil Anderson took turns at the front with the pace gradually rising. On lap 7 Phil Coulton and Ian Drayton put in an attack, quickly gaining 20 metres on the field. Phil Anderson closed on the pair and as the finish approached, Ian Drayton surged out for the win. Phil Anderson eclipsed Phil Coulton as the line approached with the pair taking second and third respectively.

The evening’s second event was a 2-lap standing start time trial. This is a hard event requiring a good initial acceleration and just the right pacing for a good result. In A grade, Michael Langdon took advantage of his first track session to post the standout time of 51.67 seconds. Wayne Benham rode a well-paced pair of laps for second best time of 53.86 seconds. John Paul De Sousa posted third best result at 54.64 seconds. The best results in B Grade were quite close with James Newhouse first at 58.48 seconds, Ian Drayton second by a very small margin at 58.50 seconds, and Bruce Griffin a close third at 59.09 seconds.

The track session closed with the usual, all-in, Italian pursuit. The teams were quite large at 9 riders each, requiring a big effort from the later riders. Team 2 had a starting mishap that looked fatal to their chance of winning. Alison Hale pulled a foot out of the pedal and the team slowed while she recovered. However, Alison recovered quickly and the team reorganised efficiently, losing less than half a lap on Team 1. Normally that lead would be impossible to run down. However, Team 2 were energised and cohesive and made inroads on Team 1 lap after lap. After mid-race, some of the Team 1 riders were tiring noticeably and this gave Team 2 the final impetus to pull clear of Team 1. On the final lap Team 2s anchor took over with about 10m advantage. The advantage was just too great for Team 1s Steve Jones to run down. It was a great performance from Team 2, as it would have been tempting to give up after their starting mishap.

Major place getters were as follows:
8-Lap Scratch: (A Grade) Steve Jones, Michael Langdon, Dave Mullins. (B Grade) Ian Drayton, Phil Anderson, Phil Coulton.
2-Lap SS Time Trail: (A Grade) Michael Langdon (51.67), Wayne Benham (53.86s), John Paul De Sousa (54.64s). (B Grade) James Newhouse (58.48s), Ian Drayton (58.50s) Bruce Griffin (59.09s).
Combined Italian Pursuit: Winner Team 2 (Ben Davis, Dominique Rideaux, Ben Robey, Wayne Benham, Ken Birch, Michael Langdon, Phil Coulton, Alison Hale, Phil Anderson).

Season Point Score Update:
John Paul De Sousa (70), Phil Coulton (68), Phil Anderson (68), Ken Birch (58), Steve Jones (58), Dougal Torrance (58), Ian Drayton (53), Bruce Griffin (51), Ben Robey (51), James Newhouse (48).

Graeme O’Neill

Old Federal Highway – 15th November

Sunday was a perfect day for racing, warm and calm. Three A graders set a cracking pace and stayed together for the entire race. They even managed to catch D grade as they were finishing. The honours went to Gerard Tiffen with Christophe Barberet close behind followed by Paul Welch.

B grade split almost immediately with Al Raitt and Dave Dickson off the front and circulating quickly. They maintained their lead over a splintering bunch behind. Al Raitt won from Dave Dickson with Carmine Spagnoletti the best of the rest.

A big field of 15 C graders stayed together for nearly the entire race. First time rider Emma Padovan did plenty of work on the front. Rafi Khan won the sprint followed by Joel Rahman and Andrew Matz.

11 riders in D grade had to suffer Des Brown’s attacks up each hill which shedded a couple off the back. In the end, Alain Arbaut prevailed over the evergreen Dave Hennessy and Des Brown.

The marshalls were impressed by the speed of the 8 E graders. They were circulating at about the same pace as D grade. The bunch whittled down to 6 after the first lap. I asked Don De Smet how he was feeling after the second lap. There was no ambiguity in his reply! Lance Purdon won the sprint from Alex Sommariva and Greg Mitchell.

2 sole F graders started with E grade but were soon circulating together. They worked together for the whole race with Chris Moffatt taking the honours from Chris Copeland.

Thanks to the wonderful volunteers that made the race seamless. Being a race director made me appreciate what a huge amount of work Graham Hendrie does week in and week out. He’s a legend.

Bruce Griffin
Race Referee