The final race of SIS 2015 will go down in history as the climb of “Mount Brimbank”. After a fairly benign start and some tricky short legs in the complex play area, the Sprint leg came up mid course. It was flat and open with a little rise just as you approached the flag – a portent of bigger things to come! One more leg took you to the lower pylon, where the monster hill climb started. You could see your destination – another pylon almost 400 metres distant, and a massive 20 contours up! The good news was that it could only be all downhill from there.
Some people would no doubt be running conservatively, saving themselves for the following day’s Champs. Others were putting it all on the line, vying for those last few Jersey points.
Ralph Street took out Course 1 in 14:20, and in doing so, scored the Yellow Jersey with 49 points, to take home to the UK. Peter Bray was second in 15:30, and Rob Baker had his best race to place third in 16:11. Tash Key (18:54) made it 6 wins from 6 races, and a Yellow Jersey to her credit. Marlene Berger, in only her second race for the series, was second in 22:15, while Asha Steer was right on her tail in 22:24.
The Sprint leg was won by Peter Collins, but it was not enough to take the Green Jersey away from Shane Mallia. Shane claimed it by half a point from Ralph. Mel Gangemi went for broke to try and keep the Green, but ended up in a tie with Sonia Lawrie. Sonia took the final jersey on countback.
On to the Hill Climb (and boy am I glad I’m not contesting that one!) Glenn James earned just enough points to claim the Polkadot Jersey from Peter Bray. Tash won the Womens climb today but it was all academic as Clare Brownridge had it wrapped up with four 10s and a 9.5.
Course 2 has two groups of competitors – the super speedy junior boys, who cut their teeth on course 3 in previous series – and the not-so-junior Girls, who have their own fiercely contested and very social rivalry! Jensen Key won the course in 15:02, ahead of Mason Arthur (15:17) and Torren Arthur (16:41). It wasn’t quite enough to wrest the Yellow Jersey from Mason. The Womens Yellow was right down to the wire. Cassy Dutton was fastest in 20:51, Julie Francis was second in 22:31, with Margi Freemantle third in 22:52. Anne Arthur was in jersey contention, but her fourth place saw her in a tie overall with Cassy; Cassy’s win today handed her the Jersey.
The Men’s Green was not in question – Steven O’Connell had been very consistent with 9 being his lowest score. He shared the win today with Brody McCarthy. Cassy won the Womens sprint. I was not expecting to keep the Jersey, but managed to hang onto it when other results fell my way. Brody won the Climb, and the Polkadot Jersey. Anne Robinson went for broke on the climb, claiming 10 points and the Jersey.
Course 3 has seen some newcomers who have rapidly improved over the past few weeks. Callum White won in 20:12, and a clear Yellow Jersey win. Felix Corcoran was second in 26:26, and Ken Moore third in 27:15. Heather O’Donnell (28:25) also sealed the Jersey with a final win in the Womens, from Alice Moon (37:03) and Karen Robinson (39:29).
Will Davey was fastest on the Sprint, winning the Green Jersey in the process. Heather also won the Sprint, but the Jersey went to Claire Adams. Callum was the fastest Climber today but Felix took the Polkadot jersey. In a good day, Heather won the Climb, and the Jersey went to Alice Moon.
So that’s a 2015 Wrap! Another series has flown by. Our thanks to everyone involved in making Sprint Into Spring such a success. Plans are already underway for 2016. And if you can’t wait that long, come along to the March Sprint Weekend over the Labor Day weekend – six races in three days! Keep an eye on the website: www.parkstreeto.com/msw