There was some oppressive heat last Saturday when the Wanganui Cycling Club held their first summer series race with 19 riders competing.

The four lap handicap race was held at the regular Western Line circuit, which starts at Brunswick Hall, turning right into Western Line then continuous left into Station-Lilybank-Brunswick roads, being 11km per lap.

The limit riders with a nine minute start on the scratch bunch split on the first lap with three riders losing contact.

Triathletes Ashley Christie, just back from the 'Coast to Coast' and Clint Black, entered 'Ironman Taupo' next month, combined well with Finnegan Murphy and Ross McNeill.


This group worked hard to stay clear.

Behind them the large scratch bunch stayed together, eating into the front group's lead.
Dayle Cheatley, the former New Zealand track head coach having his first race in eight years, was rallying the riders.

Cheatley and his former professional rider and Olympian wife Catherine have returned to live and work in Whanganui.

Jason Sturzaker was proving to be the strongest rider having huge turns, with Cheatley, Paul Baskett and work horse Adrian Pettit doing their bit.

On the last lap, Graeme Cox showed great skills on the downhill, just as the rain began, attacking and breaking up the bunch.

Reaching the flat, Sturzaker dragged everyone back to the escapees.

One kilometre from the finish, McNeill and Blacks bunch were reined in.

In the sprint finish, Cheatley prevailed over Palmerston North school boy Kyle Hoskin and local schoolboy Finnegan Murphy, who both had outstanding rides and look to have a big future in the sport.


The separate D grade race over three laps was won by Tim Chambers, outsprinting runnerup Allan Luff, and third-placed Marty Hewson.

1. Dayle Cheatley (1.18.00); 2. Kyle Hoskin (1.18.00); 3. Finnegan Murphy 1.27.00; 4. Paul Baskett; 5. Philip Groves.