National Cyclocross Series – Round Three
Posted by auscxmag
Posted in News
words: auscxmag photography: Martin Hurley
The National Cyclocross Series (NCXS) travelled to Perth for the first time in 2014 adding two rounds to the calendar. With not too much information on what to expect from the west Australian Cyclocross scene competitors from traditional Australian ’cross locations on the east coast were excited and curious as to what could be expected.
Upon arrival to the location of round three at the Midvale Speed Dome in Perth’s northern suburbs, it was clear that course designers had spent a considerable amount of time in set up preparing the course. The two kilometre course made good use of the area available, one long 300 metre paved start straight lead into a right hand grass corner and from there it was corner after corner on greasy grass, with some corners placed so that they were also in a tricky off camber position. From the tricky multiple corners was a long straight grass section leading to more greasy corners, a short deep sand uphill, a tricky loop through a pine needle garden before an uphill barrier section, another pine needle garden up and down before a paved run into the finish line.
To start the day a combined support race was held consisting of Open (mountain bike), B Grade and C Grade cyclocross. A fast start with the Open category placed on the front row meant some sharp elbows and rubbing before the B grade favourites could reach the first turn in front. By the end of the first lap a lead group of four were fighting it out consisting of locals James Kennedy and Sean Maggs, South Australia’s David Miller and Australian Cyclocross Magazine’s Sean Couley. The group was whittled down as David Miller fell off the pace, and then finally by lap four a gap had formed between the two locals with Sean Couley in third place. Chasing behind was a strong group of four riders slowly closing the distance to third over the 35 minute race. James Kennedy easily won the race with young local Sean Maggs claiming second, and Sean Couley doing enough to place third.
Next to race were the elite women. A small field had entered for the Perth rounds with many faces missing including current series leader and national champion Lisa Jacobs (in France) resulting in seven women taking the start line. With all women spread across the front row it was April Mcdonough who had the best start to lead into the first corner with Melissa Anset and Josie Simpson following close behind. April McDonough was the pre-race favourite due to Lisa Jacobs absence and did not disappoint, slowly extending her lead as the race progressed with a fine display of technical finesse and power as she pushed a massive gear for the entire race to comfortably take the win. Melissa Anset though unable to match McDonough’s pace was never troubled by any other rider finishing second. Josie Simpson did hold third place for the first two laps but was overtaken by local rider Kate Swain and also South Australia’s Gemma Kernich. Kate Swain rode excellently to claim third in front of her home crowd, with Kernich placing fourth and Simpson fifth to round out the top five.
The final race of the day was the elite mens with 42 competitors on the start line. Plenty of riders had travelled from interstate, and notable absentees were national champion Allan Iacuone (currently in France) and World Championship competitor Nick Both (fractured ankle). It was still a stacked field consisting of Chris Jongewaard, Garry Millburn, Adrian Jackson, Paul Redenbach and also local talented riders Peter Hatton and State Champion Craig Cooke.
The gun for the start went off and as the riders reached the end of the start straight it was no surprise to see Garry Millburn lead the race into the first corner. It only took half a lap for a group of five riders to form at the front of the race including Adrian Jackson, Tom Chapman, Garry Millburn, Shaun Lewis and Chris Jongewaard. This group would not last long with Jongewaard racing away from the field, leaving a chase group consisting of Jackson, Millburn and Paul Redenbach. Jongewaard proceeded to extend his lead over the course of the race by such an extent that he would not be troubled for the rest of the race. Riding in a class of his own and looking comfortable on all sections of the fast circuit. Behind, a battle was playing out for the minor placings between Adrian Jackson, Paul Redenbach and local riders Peter Hatton and Craig Cooke as they were locked on each other’s wheel for most of the race. Unfortunately for Cooke his day was ended early by a mechanical issue with two laps remaining. Peter Hatton also dropped slightly off the pace of the group at this point leaving Jackson and Redenbach to fight for the placings. Redenbach was able to sightly ride away from Jackson to cross the finish line in second place just three seconds ahead of Jackson in third.
The win in round three of the National Cyclocross Series was enough for both April McDonough and Chris Jongewaard to both take the lead in the series. Round four was to be held the very next day at Garvey Park in the northern Perth suburb of Ascot
- Chris Jongewaard 1.01’03
- Paul Redenbach +0’07
- Adrian Jackson +0’10
- Peter Hatton +0’31
- Shaun Lewis +1’07
- Chris Aitken +1’35
- Tom Chapman +2’05
- Garry Millburn +2’30
- Jade Lean +2’34
- Russell Collett +2’36
- April McDonough 47’27
- Melissa Anset +1’29
- Kate Swain +2’12
- Gemma Kernich +3’16
- Josie Simpson – 1 Lap