Sunday, August 05, 2007




Saturday’s Cunningham Classic saw the cyclists face a 98km journey from Gatton to Warwick. This was the 25th Anniversary Cunningham Classic, which made the race that bit ‘special’. Notorious for its fierce head and cross winds, dead roads and King of the Mountain, this race is a great prize for a strong rider.

Brady, Cookie and Nolesy set out to Gatton for the cold and breezy start, supported by their masseurs/dieticians/mentors (their Wives). It was agreed early in the season that this race will be the highlight of the racing calendar and our boys were well prepared.

Elite B were first off the start line, followed by the other grades at 15 minute intervals. After wishing our husbands, GOOD LUCK, the girls hit the road to prepare for the King of Mountain 40.5km from the start. The weather had again not been kind and it was freezing and very windy.

Brady’s group was first over, with the Victor Broncos boys leading the charge, Brady looked unfazed and comfortable sitting at 4th wheel in the pack. There was a short wait until Cookie was up and over the KOM in the bunch also looking good and comfortable, a little while later Nolesy emerged from around the KOM bend also sitting pretty in the lead pack; so far all going to plan. We even picked up a straggler – lucky boy.

Because of the timed intervals at the start, we now had to high tail it into Warwick so we would not miss Brady’s finish. We hit the highway and we hit traffic; slow traffic. Rachele and Donna had not only defied death several times in the chase to the finish but also damaged their passenger (the poor lad) into premature aging. We hit Victoria Street and hit the ground running with only minutes to spare.

News had come through on the radio that there was a 4 man breakaway with a time gap of 2 minutes and Brady was in it!! Could this mean a victory at last? The tension was building in the Team Dalby camp. Within minutes of our arrival the flashing light came around the bend at the top of Victoria Street and there were 4 riders, Inverell rider, Adam Gill, Stephen Hendrek and BRADY.. With about 100m to go Stephen and Brady jumped and left the other 2 for dead, they battled it until the last few metres and Brady was in the clear and over the line. With a punch in the air and a whoop of delight (relief or surprise) Brady had finally won his first race. The crowd went wild with joy and tears all around.

It wasn’t long before Cookie’s group were heading towards the finish. It was going to be tough, there were a few riders giving it all they had and Cookie was still on a high after his previous week’s victory. Closer as they got to the line, the closer Cookie got to a podium finish and he just missed… Cookie remaining consistently fantastic with 4th place. Cookie also pulled some very valuable SEQ tour points on current leader, he finish in 8th.

As Donna’s nails were getting chewed to the quick, Nolesy was having the ride of a life time. As the Masters C group rounded into the finishing straight all our eyes searched for Nolesy; there he is!! The sprint was fast and furious and Tony gave his everything and finished superbly in 6th place. After the race, whilst greeting his fans he couldn’t even get off his bike, those bloody cramps had just about wrecked him. This was a huge feat for Tony after being unable to finish last year’s race because on his constant and painful cramping.

After presentations and a well deserved lunch, we all headed back to the barracks to prepare for the following days Warwick Criterium. We all stayed at the Horse and Jockey Motel and must thank them for their fabulous meals but also their kindness in allowing us to stay on after the crit for ‘as long as we need’.

The Crit was also going to be tough, it was freezing cold and Nolesy was first out at 8am..The Bikeline boys controlled the race from the very beginning with John Lindley and Nolesy doing most the work on the front, taking turns and using their power to stamp their authority on the race. With no one wanting to do the work it still came down to a bunch sprint and the boys from the back with the fresh legs then took their turn to take victory. Nolesy finished in an excellent 6th and Bikeline team mate John Lindley took out 3rd.

Cookie was next up in a combined Masters A & B race. This was a very tough and very fast race. Tactics were a HUGE player in this race with Masters A Champ working with Masters B SEQ Leader to ensure Cookie’s demise. Well, they didn’t count on our tough Cookie. With the SEQ Tour Leader shaking in his boots as Cookie is breathing down his neck he matched every move and stayed on Cookie’s wheel for the entire race. Cookie rode smart and still came out with a brilliant 4th place. It will come down to next weekend’s Flight Centre series to decide the winner, let’s hope Cookie can come away with the goods.

Brady was the final Team Dalby member to line up for the Crit. His race was going to be scarey…Victor Broncos were there in FORCE. They controlled the whole race, sending out breakaways and then slowing down the bunch. This made is very difficult for Brady to do anything. With 2 Victor Broncos off the front, no one was willing to pull them in, Brady worked and worked to finally pull in the break away with only 2 laps to go, it was always going to come down to a bunch sprint finish. Victor Broncos taking out 1st and 3rd and Brady in 5th. Although he didn’t make the podium he showed his strength in pulling in the breakaway.

This was an extremely successful weekend for our boys and we should be very proud of them as they showed some real guts out there. They train hard and they deserve their excellent result. WELL RIDDEN MEN.


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