Ben Hastie showed he has come of age this season when he broke away early in the B grade criterium at Picton and despite very windy conditions held the field off and recorded a solo victory with daylight second.

Good to see Kim Overington back out riding after a recent accident that almost saw him lose his right eye.  As always Kim put in regular surges breaking away with Ben early on before dropping back to the main bunch.  Jessica Lawler put in some strong efforts which quickly had club treasurer Mark Thomas in difficulty.  Unfortunately Claes and Graham Clarke also found the windy conditions challenging.  Russell Horlin, Jason Linaker and Adrian Wood all lapped strongly but failed to put any dent into Hastie’s lead.

In the final lap Horlin in true Mercy Ships spirit lead the group out leaving Jason and Adrian to battle for the bunch sprint with Adrian claiming it right on the line.

A grade was bolstered by new club members, the two Fat Ducks – Lee Scurlock and Ryan Scarth.  Unfortunately Tony Doherty who has had a few injury problems lately was an early casualty and team mate Ryan Bradshaw was also put under pressure when Nicholas launched a strong attack.  Scurlock and Scarth worked well together chasing any breaks with young Bryce and Jaiden Lanigan riding tactically smart races as always.

Nicholas felt hard done by when Jo blew the whistle for a priem just when he had been caught after his solo break.  Bryce capitalised and sprinted strongly for the $5 prize.  With the bunch slowing up after the priem brother Jaiden went on the attack and maintained a solo break for several laps.

Heading to the finish it was all together however and the speed dropped as riders jostled for position.  In the end Jaiden was too quick just getting the better of Nicholas with Ryan Scarth first of the ducks and taking a strong 3rd place in his first club race.

Earlier in the night in the Have a Go / Junior ride Courtland Wood made it 5 from 5 sprints with the group doing a slow lap, moderate lap then a sprint lap.  No doubt Harrison will be looking to extract his revenge at Wednesday’s TT.

Many thanks to Andrew Lanigan for assisting with the junior ride, Leonie, Neil and Brian for marshalling and Suzanne for timekeeping.  The next crit is next Friday evening 5th December on the popular Stratham circuit and we will be looking to run a C grade as well as A and B.

A Grade – 30 min plus 2

1. Jaiden Lanigan

2. Nicholas Lawler

3. Ryan Scarth

4.  Bryce Lanigan

5. Lee Scurlock

6.  Ryan Bradshaw

7.  Tony Doherty

B Grade – 25 min plus 2

1. Ben Hastie

2. Adrian Wood

3. Jason Linaker

4. Russell Horlin

5. Jessica Lawler

6. Kim Overington

7. Graham Clarke

8.  Claes Q.

9. Mark Thomas