Cycling | Nowra Velo Club at round one of Southern Region series

FINAL STRETCH: Jason Spence leads his club mates Ben Wallis, Gary Bryce, Tony Kuipers, John Cullity, Geoff Lockhjart and Henry Wakeford to the finish.

FINAL STRETCH: Jason Spence leads his club mates Ben Wallis, Gary Bryce, Tony Kuipers, John Cullity, Geoff Lockhjart and Henry Wakeford to the finish.

The Nowra Velo Club had 18 riders on the start line for the first round of the Southern Region’s Interclub series at Gunning on Saturday.

Nick Johns was the NVC’s top placed rider, crossing the line in third position in the division one race. He was followed over the line by Nowra Velo duo Mark Astley and Mark Williams.

Johns had experienced a race crash in February that resulted in a broken wrist.

A solid home trainer program has Nick back on the road with his usual speed.

The division one race was won by Goulburn’s scratch rider Jacob Emmerton.

The entire field in this division one event came together in the last kilometre for the uphill drag to the finish line.

With weather that was cold and windy there were non-starters in both division one and division two races but still more than adequate starters to provide some class racing.

The roads were dry at the start but showers were encountered on the Breadalbane side of the Cullerin Range.

The division two race was won by the long out marker, Mick Marshall of the Illawarra Cycle Club.

Marshall rode away from his starting bunch early in the event and soloed to the finish with a comfortable margin.

More front markers crossed the line before Nowra Velo Club’s Richard Vitiello led a big but over the line for ninth placing.

A group of NVC riders were right there with Vitiello and Michael Berriman placed tenth ahead of Jason Spence, Ben Wallis, Gary Bryce, Tony Kuipers, John Cullity, Geoff Lockhart and Henry Wakeford in 17th position.

This was a forceful ride from Vitiello, who was having his second race start after a two month recovery following a heavy crash that resulted in a shoulder injury.

Other Nowra Velo riders finishing in this event included Scott James, Kate Darke, Michael Thompson and Brendon Miller.

Most of these riders gathered points towards the Nowra Velo Club’s defence of the interclub series shield.

Full detailed results will be available within the week.

This event was hosted by the Goulburn Cycle Club and the second round of the interclub series will be held at Dapto on June 16 and hosted by the Illawarra Cycle Club.

The Nowra Velo Club returns to local road racing next Sunday with the annual George Johnson memorial handicap on the Braidwood Road short course starting from Wugan Street at 8.30 am.

The duty officials for this event are the Allen Price and Scarratt’s team.