Torckler keeps yellow as Piccoli wins on Bluff Hill

Canadian James Piccoli has been one of the biggest contributors on this year’s SBS Bank Tour of Southland and he was finally rewarded with a stage win on the iconic Bluff Hill today.

0
707

Canadian James Piccoli has been one of the biggest contributors on this year’s SBS Bank Tour of Southland and he was finally rewarded with a stage win on the iconic Bluff Hill today.

Piccoli (Kia Motors-Ascot Park Hotel) has been prominent this week, including a second placing on Coronet Peak on Wednesday, and he started stage four from Invercargill to Bluff trailing tour leader Michael Torckler (Blindz Direct) by 44sec.  He found himself in a two man breakaway with Matt Ross (PowerNet) as the race rolled its way around the picturesque Glenham hills, but the decisive move would come on Motu Pohue.

“The breakaway was a bit of a gamble. We were hoping to draw a few other guys across. It turned out it didn’t work, so we reshuffled the cards and waited for the last climb,” he said.  Ross was left to carry on alone, but found support in Josh Kuysten (Blindz Direct) and Southland’s Matt Zenovich (Mike Greer Homes).

Zenovich briefly provided some hope for his second Southland stage victory, but the climb became a battle of the tour contenders, with Torckler, Piccoli and Michael Vink (Mike Greer Homes) all buying tickets.  Piccoli edged Torckler by 8sec to cut the New Plymouth rider’s overall lead to 32sec with three stages remaining.  Lionel Mawditt (Team Skoda Racing) was third across the line, with Vink fourth and third overall, trailing Torckler by 1min 13sec.

“It’s probably the steepest hill I’ve ever raced up so it definitely lives up to its reputation,” Piccoli said.  “We did it the day before the race in training so we knew what to expect. It’s an unbelievable hill and it was a great day. (This) is an awesome event – super well run, super coverage and we are super happy to be here. Kia Motors-Ascot Park Hotel have been doing a pretty good job of animating the race and participating.”

Piccoli now looms as the strongest challenger to Torckler. While a lot of good overseas riders have taken part in New Zealand’s most prestigious stage race, only three have ever won it.  “It will still be interesting the last couple of days,” Piccoli said.  “I’ve heard that this race can be lost at any moment with crosswinds and the weather so we are going to keep the pressure on and hopefully make the race exciting.”

Torckler was a relieved bike rider after defending the yellow jersey on the same stage where his tour ambitions evaporated last year.  “The boys rode unreal, kept me out of the wind the whole stage and set me up beautifully at the bottom of the climb again,” he said.

Tomorrow’s 151km stage from Invercargill to Gore presents a new set of challenges, with crosswinds and testing climbs on the menu.  “It could be a real nasty day, we’ll be watching very closely to what’s going up the road, who is being aggressive and I’ll be sticking close to my boys,” Torckler said.  However, the Blindz Direct team were enjoying having the yellow jersey to defend, he said.  “They are thriving on it. It was pretty cool to have Josh Kuysten up the road too, that was a nice little treat for him. They are pretty pumped to be getting their time on the camera.”

Alexandra’s James Williamson (Creation Signs L&M Mining Group Ricoh) continues to lead the Sprint Ace classification, with teammate Ben Barry taking over the King of the Mountains standings.  Alex West (Team Skoda Racing) retained the under 23 lead, while Paul Odlin (PowerNet) claimed back the over 35s Silver jersey.  Kia Motors-Ascot Park Hotel lead the teams classification, while Matt Ross (PowerNet) took Most Combative honours from stage four.

James Piccoli of Kia Motors Ascot Park Hotel after winning the SBS Bank Tour of Southland stage 4 to Bluff, photo Studio Jubb

 

Stage results:
Pos. Rider Time

1

James PICCOLIKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 3:25:40 (43.32 km/h)

2

Michael TORCKLERBlindz Direct 00:08

3

Lionel MAWDITTTeam Skoda Racing 00:19

4

Michael VINKMike Greer Homes 00:24

5

Raphael FREIENSTEINAardvark Excavators Ltd 00:28

6

Boris CLARKCalder Stewart 00:34

7

James FOUCHECreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 00:41

8

Alex WESTTeam Skoda Racing ST

9

Mike CUMINGAardvark Excavators Ltd ST

10

Ryan CHRISTENSENKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 00:50

11

Brad EVANSPowernet ST

12

Sam MOBBERLEYITM 00:54

13

Paul ODLINPowernet 01:03

14

John WANSINKAdair Craik Accountants 01:15

15

Taylor GUNMANKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 01:17

16

Campbell PITHIEITM 01:23

17

Jake MARRYATTCalder Stewart ST

18

Ben ANDREWSAardvark Excavators Ltd ST

19

Carne GROUBECentral Benchmakers – Willbike ST

20

Joseph SWALECentral Benchmakers – Willbike ST

21

Kane RICHARDSITM 01:37

22

Ben ROBERTSONTotalPOS 01:46

23

Richard RANDALLGiant Lakeside ST

24

Andy HAGANWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 02:00

25

Florian BARKETTeam Skoda Racing 02:01

26

Roman VAN UDENPowernet ST

27

Alex QUIRKAdair Craik Accountants ST

28

Tim RUSHMike Greer Homes ST

29

Conner SALLEEGiant Lakeside ST

30

Matthew HIGGINSWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 02:08

31

Nick KERGOZOUPlacemakers 02:10

32

Joel YATESTeam Skoda Racing 02:23

33

Steve NICHOLLSTank Guy / Bikebox 02:28

34

Greg TAYLORTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo ST

35

Blake TAIT-JONESBusiness South 02:31

36

Ollie JONESPowernet 02:36

37

Kane MCCOLLUMWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 02:38

38

Hamish BEADLEBusiness South 02:47

39

Jared GRAYPlacemakers 02:50

40

Andrew KINGTotalPOS 02:52

41

Nick BEGGTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 03:12

42

Calvin STANDRILLTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 03:22

43

Rylan DOWDELLBlindz Direct ST

44

Dan FURMINGERCalder Stewart 03:27

45

Ben BARRYCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 03:34

46

Bradley LEITCHTeam Skoda Racing 03:40

47

Hefin PRICETotalPOS 03:49

48

Liam CAPPELAdair Craik Accountants 03:51

49

Cyrus MONKKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 03:53

50

Alex HEANEYPowernet 03:56

51

Alexander RAYWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 04:01

52

Frank SUTTONGiant Lakeside 04:06

53

Travis KANEBusiness South 04:10

54

Callum PEARCEMike Greer Homes ST

55

Paul WRIGHTCentral Benchmakers – Willbike ST

56

Joshua ALDRIDGEBlindz Direct 04:30

57

Jason THOMASONBlindz Direct ST

58

Brendan COLEITM ST

59

Luke MACPHERSONPlacemakers 04:35

60

Ethan BATTMike Greer Homes 04:39

61

Josh HAGGERTYPlacemakers 04:42

62

Mathew ZENOVICHMike Greer Homes 04:44

63

Max JONESTeam Skoda Racing 04:51

64

Kevin GIRKINSKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 04:57

65

Eric MARCOTTEKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 04:59

66

Grayson KEPPLERGiant Lakeside 05:03

67

Josh KUYSTENBlindz Direct 05:09

68

Alex BEEDIECalder Stewart ST

69

Jakob LESTERPlacemakers 05:12

70

Dan CROSSAardvark Excavators Ltd 05:20

71

Kris RUSHAdair Craik Accountants 05:22

72

Morgan SMITHAardvark Excavators Ltd 05:28

73

Jordan GILMORECentral Benchmakers – Willbike 05:50

74

Matt ROSSPowernet 05:52

75

Nicholas COSTELLOITM ST

76

Joshua SCOTTCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 06:03

77

James WILLIAMSONCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 06:17

78

Logan GRIFFINTank Guy / Bikebox ST

79

Joseph CHAPMANCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 06:20

80

Matt CRYERWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 06:23

81

Louis CROSBYBlindz Direct ST

82

David WEAVERWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 06:53

83

Daniel RAETotalPOS 07:22

84

Rob SCARLETTAardvark Excavators Ltd 10:10

85

Matias FITZWATERCalder Stewart 13:51

86

Callum GORDONBusiness South ST

87

Chris LATTATalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 14:15

88

Sam GARDNERTank Guy / Bikebox 14:19

89

William MILBURNBusiness South 14:50

90

Glen REWIMike Greer Homes 15:03

91

Joe HUTCHINSONTotalPOS 15:11

92

Gavin MASONBusiness South 15:25

93

Owen OWENSCalder Stewart 15:38

94

Timothy CHAPMANCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 16:05

95

Guy CARTERCentral Benchmakers – Willbike 16:30

96

Samuel MILLERPlacemakers 17:00

97

Reon NOLANITM 17:02

98

Martin RYDERTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 24:55

99

Nick ROSSTotalPOS 25:01

100

William FINDLAYTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 27:43

101

Ian EAGLETank Guy / Bikebox 49:11

102

Benjamin WILLIAMSGiant Lakeside 52:23

103

Michael SMITHGiant Lakeside DNF

 

General classification after stage 4:
Pos. Rider Time

1

Michael TORCKLERBlindz Direct 15:05:17

2

James PICCOLIKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 00:32

3

Michael VINKMike Greer Homes 01:13

4

Raphael FREIENSTEINAardvark Excavators Ltd 02:21

5

Mike CUMINGAardvark Excavators Ltd 03:03

6

Alex WESTTeam Skoda Racing 03:21

7

Taylor GUNMANKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 03:42

8

Ryan CHRISTENSENKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 03:49

9

Sam MOBBERLEYITM 04:04

10

Brad EVANSPowernet 04:25

11

Jake MARRYATTCalder Stewart 04:43

12

James FOUCHECreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 04:56

13

Boris CLARKCalder Stewart 05:30

14

Kane RICHARDSITM 05:32

15

Ben ANDREWSAardvark Excavators Ltd 06:31

16

Paul ODLINPowernet 06:47

17

Lionel MAWDITTTeam Skoda Racing 07:00

18

Richard RANDALLGiant Lakeside 07:07

19

Tim RUSHMike Greer Homes 07:08

20

Andy HAGANWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 07:15

21

Roman VAN UDENPowernet 07:57

22

Carne GROUBECentral Benchmakers – Willbike 08:04

23

Campbell PITHIEITM 08:47

24

Nick KERGOZOUPlacemakers 08:57

25

John WANSINKAdair Craik Accountants 09:45

26

Cyrus MONKKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 10:14

27

Alex QUIRKAdair Craik Accountants 10:19

28

Matt ROSSPowernet 10:53

29

Rylan DOWDELLBlindz Direct 10:56

30

Mathew ZENOVICHMike Greer Homes 11:02

31

Calvin STANDRILLTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 11:40

32

Conner SALLEEGiant Lakeside 11:48

33

Blake TAIT-JONESBusiness South 11:50

34

Andrew KINGTotalPOS 12:23

35

Matthew HIGGINSWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 12:29

36

Joseph SWALECentral Benchmakers – Willbike 12:32

37

Ben BARRYCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 12:38

38

Morgan SMITHAardvark Excavators Ltd 12:47

39

Greg TAYLORTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 13:02

40

Ollie JONESPowernet 13:10

41

Florian BARKETTeam Skoda Racing 13:16

42

Frank SUTTONGiant Lakeside 13:26

43

Steve NICHOLLSTank Guy / Bikebox 14:29

44

Callum PEARCEMike Greer Homes 14:57

45

Luke MACPHERSONPlacemakers 15:10

46

Nick BEGGTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 15:19

47

Grayson KEPPLERGiant Lakeside 16:16

48

Josh KUYSTENBlindz Direct 16:57

49

Dan FURMINGERCalder Stewart 17:13

50

Matt CRYERWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 17:16

51

Kane MCCOLLUMWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 17:52

52

Brendan COLEITM 18:00

53

Bradley LEITCHTeam Skoda Racing 18:45

54

Kevin GIRKINSKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 18:51

55

Joel YATESTeam Skoda Racing 18:55

56

Alexander RAYWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 19:39

57

Ethan BATTMike Greer Homes 20:18

58

Josh HAGGERTYPlacemakers 20:48

59

Kris RUSHAdair Craik Accountants 21:26

60

Paul WRIGHTCentral Benchmakers – Willbike 22:16

61

Hefin PRICETotalPOS 22:28

62

Alex HEANEYPowernet 22:36

63

Jakob LESTERPlacemakers 23:03

64

Eric MARCOTTEKia Motors – Ascot Park Hotel 23:14

65

James WILLIAMSONCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 23:35

66

Ben ROBERTSONTotalPOS 23:50

67

Jason THOMASONBlindz Direct ST

68

Matias FITZWATERCalder Stewart 24:09

69

Joshua SCOTTCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 24:23

70

Alex BEEDIECalder Stewart 24:42

71

Max JONESTeam Skoda Racing 25:20

72

Liam CAPPELAdair Craik Accountants 26:19

73

Logan GRIFFINTank Guy / Bikebox 26:43

74

Jared GRAYPlacemakers 27:13

75

Rob SCARLETTAardvark Excavators Ltd 29:50

76

Jordan GILMORECentral Benchmakers – Willbike 29:58

77

Nicholas COSTELLOITM 31:00

78

Gavin MASONBusiness South 31:21

79

Dan CROSSAardvark Excavators Ltd 32:08

80

Joshua ALDRIDGEBlindz Direct 32:18

81

Hamish BEADLEBusiness South 33:55

82

Louis CROSBYBlindz Direct 35:37

83

Owen OWENSCalder Stewart 37:32

84

Chris LATTATalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 37:45

85

Joseph CHAPMANCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 39:02

86

Daniel RAETotalPOS 40:19

87

Travis KANEBusiness South 40:55

88

David WEAVERWheelworks Handcrafted Wheels 41:06

89

Joe HUTCHINSONTotalPOS 41:29

90

Callum GORDONBusiness South 44:54

91

Samuel MILLERPlacemakers 45:12

92

Sam GARDNERTank Guy / Bikebox 45:47

93

Glen REWIMike Greer Homes 47:04

94

William MILBURNBusiness South 50:51

95

Timothy CHAPMANCreation Signs L&M Group Ricoh 53:57

96

Reon NOLANITM 55:40

97

Nick ROSSTotalPOS 57:42

98

Martin RYDERTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 58:23

99

Guy CARTERCentral Benchmakers – Willbike 59:34

100

William FINDLAYTalbot Forest Cheese – Ultimo 1:01:37

101

Ian EAGLETank Guy / Bikebox OTL

102

Benjamin WILLIAMSGiant Lakeside OTL

103

Michael SMITHGiant Lakeside DNF

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here