The final race in the 2019 five race Trust House North Island Teams Series took place on Sunday with riders in all three masters’ grades. Series leads changed hands in masters 1 with Brent Backhouse snatching the title, while Huib Buick and Richard Sutton claimed masters 2 and 3 overall crowns respectively.
Race director Jorge Sandoval said there was a lot at stake particularly in grades one and two heading into Sunday’s 85km race, which began at Henley Lake in Masterton and saw riders race towards Alfredton and return via Whangeahu Valley to the finish.
With strong Northwesterlies of almost 70km/h the action started very early in the masters one grade with Andy Hagan from Wheelworks and Matt Frecklington from Fitlab team breaking away after six kilometres of racing. Race leader Gavin McCarthy as well as second placed Brent Backhouse from MeoGP Team stayed comfortable in the main bunch, not wanting to expose themselves too early in the race and hoping the two leaders would be caught before the end.
By the halfway mark, however, the two leaders had a six minute lead over the bunch with Masterton rider, Ben Knight riding for Capital Cycles-Best Build a further two minutes behind the leaders. In the end it was Hagan who took the win from Frecklington with Ben Knight coming in third place three minutes behind, with the main bunch arriving 4.45 behind Hagan.
With race leader Gavin McCarthy coming in 11th place the Trust House title went to Brent Backhouse who crossed the line in 5th place, enough to take the series with 85 points with Steve Bale second on 79 points and McCarthy in third a further point behind.
The team Trust House title was won by Wheelworks.
In the masters two grade the action also started early with a group of four riders breaking at the 7km mark and by mid-point they held a lead of almost two minutes. Colin Sullivan from Total Home, Glenn Kirk from WCNI, local rider Simon Pumfrey from Tararua Builders and Tim Renner from Fitlab proved too strong for the large bunch and managed to stay away and fight for line honours.
At the finish the four leaders went for the sprint with Colin Sullivan taking first place, closely followed by Simon Pumfrey with Tim Renner in third place. A large bunch of 45 riders came in almost two minutes behind with race leader Huib Buick from Fitlab finishing in 12th place; giving him enough points to take the 2019 masters two Trust House title by one point from 2018 winner Matthew Stevens of BDO, with Glenn Kirk from WCNI in third place one point behind Stevens.
The Trust House team’s title was won by Capital Cycles – Best build.
Masters three grade race was full of small attacks on the way to Alfredton but none eventuated, and as throughout the series, over the last 20 kilometres the strength of Optimal Performance emerged as they controlled the pace at the front and showed their strength; as they filled the podium once again with Thomas Boeschenteing coming in first with Steve O’Keefe in second place and current leader Richard Sutton in third and securing the individual and teams Trust House titles.
At the series presentation held at The Farriers Restaurant and Bar in Masterton, Mr Sandoval paid special thanks to race sponsor Trust House, race officials and the Ulysses Motorcycle Club.
“Once again with the support of Trust House we managed to stage another great series and place the Wairarapa region as a true road cycling destination. All riders endorsed the new circuits with the series being well supported. In this year’s series we raced to Ngawi, Lake Wairarapa, Tora and Martinborough in South Wairarapa as well as Rangitumau, Alfredton and Masterton. We had over 220 riders take part over five races, most of them coming from outside the Wairarapa providing a good economic impact to the region. I will work hard to keep the series based here in the Wairarapa with a better, bigger event in 2020,” Mr Sandoval said.
1st: Andy Hagan – Wheelworks Team
2nd Matt Frecklington – Fitlab
3rd Ben Knight – Fitlab
Trust House Series winner – Brent Backhouse – Meo GP Team
Trust House Team title – Wheelworks Team
1st Colin Sullivan – Total Home Theatre team
2nd Simon Pumfrey – Tararua Builders team
3rd Tim Renner – Fitlab
Trust House Series winner – Huib Buick – Fitlab
Trust House teams title – Capital Cycles – Best Build team
1st Thomas Boeschenstein – Optimal Performance
2nd Stephen O’Keefe – Optimal performance
3rd Richard Sutton – Optimal Performance
Trust House Series winner – Richard Sutton – Optimal performance
Trust House teams title – Optimal Performance team