Mason still feels need for speed...CWD

05/05/2011 12:16


Mason still feels need for speed

05 May, 2011 04:00 AM
A STRONG contingent from the Orange Cycle Club is set to head to the 2011 Cootamundra Haycarters Handicap event - one of the largest staged in New South Wales - this weekend.

Young guns Angus Tobin and Michael Troy, along with masters riders Matt Dean, Rodney Farrell, Dugald Parsons, Andrew Foxall, Michael Cain and Mason Manwaring will all contest the Cycling NSW event.

For Manwaring, it will be his first trip to Cootamundra.

He’ll contest the Saturday race - a 70km handicap event - in the masters three category, while the rest of the OCC riders will also take on Sunday’s 60km recovery handicap.

Manwaring has two goals heading into the race.

“To finish and without crashing,” he laughed.

Riders from across NSW’s country and metropolitan areas will flock to the Cootamundra-based event, which has grown from 40 riders to a field of over 200 in its history.

Riders compete in the under 23s level, the elite men and the masters class.

“Masters three is where they’ve put me, which is another way of saying old and fat,” Manwaring smiled.

What it does mean is Manwaring will be riding in the 40-45 year age group.

It’s just his second year competing in races around the region after originally commuting around Sydney on two wheels.

“Recreational riding is fantastic fun but if you still have a bit of competitiveness about you then the next logical step is some racing. And I haven’t lost being competitive,” he said.

“Don’t let the grey hair fool you.”

The 40-year-old has won races in Bathurst and has taken out club events in Orange but Manwaring believes the Haycarters Handicap will be a different story.

“I haven’t won an open event and it’s unlikely that I would,” he said.

“At our club level it’s always competitive and when we go down to Bathurst we’re always in the top bunch finishes, whether you win or not is another thing.

“These open events, if you can hang on you can certainly be in the bunch when you finish but you won’t beat a 25-year-old 60kg sprinter.

“but it’s all good fun.”

Manwaring said the Orange bunch would be strong over a challenging course - although only short in distance.

“It means a really fast, aggressive finish. But whether you’re there or not is another thing. We’ve got 65km to worry about before we get there,” he said.

Also competing in Cootamundra, Michael Troy will be coming off the back of a successful Tour of Canberra last weekend.

Taking place around the ACT’s Mt Stromlo, Troy won overall honours in the King of the Mountain stakes and placed third overall in the sprint category.