CLUB road race champion Tristan Ward raced away with the win in the Optus Nowra Velo Club’s 53 kilometre handicap event on Sunday.
Ward led a bunch of 15 riders through the final corner and kicked away up the 300 metre finishing straight to win by five lengths from Levi Johns with Godfrey Green following over the line in third position.
Ward and Johns had started the event on the scratch mark and chased through the field to the front of the race with less than three kilometres remaining.
For over 40 kilometres Ward and Johns picked up bunch after bunch of riders but at that point six of the front markers were still clear and out of sight.
Lawry Byrne, Rod Pierce, Kate Darke, Steve Daley, Kim Waters and Pat McSwiney were in two of the early start groups that had combined in the second half of the race.
This six still had half a minute with five kilometres remaining but the force of the younger men chasing from behind shut that down in less than three kilometres.
It was all together with 25 riders as they charged over those final desperate kilometres.
This bunch blew apart and 15 were up for the finish along Wugan Street.
Ward reversed the placing on Johns from last week’s result at Flinders with this win and Green was back from Melbourne where racing in Victoria kept him in form.
Rob Rix crossed the line in fourth position with Jade Colligan a close fifth. Then followed Gary Bryce, Rob Pickard, Dion Carter, Kon Kinnas, Brendon Miller, Bruce Jenkins, Hubert Driehuis, Tim Devlin, Patrick McSwiney, and Michelle Harris.
Twenty three seconds later Mick Crutch led the second group over the line, ahead of Kate Darke, Steve Daley, Jo Chalain, Rod Pierce and Aaron Lauder.
Following on were Kim Waters, Lawry Byrne, Mitch Cunningham, Tarni Cunningham and Dave Gray.
Mechanicals put Mark Robbins, Hanry Wakeford and Gavin Nethery on the sidelines.
Next Sunday the Optus Nowra Velo Club will return to the Flinders Industrial Complex for round eight of the MIE 2014 Team Challenge series.
The program will feature scratch races in four grades where all events will have sprint points available for the Watts Factory sprint series.
Hanlon Windows leads the team classification, Levi Johns enjoys the lead in the individual points while Michelle Harris has a two point lead in the Watts Factory sprint series.
Racing starts at 9am and the TLE Electrical team will host the program.