3 November 2019
Hill climbers are set to dominate race four of the Trust House North Island team cycling series to be held north of Masterton this weekend.
Dubbed the “Queen” race of the series by event organiser Jorge Sandoval, the race is over 67km course around Mauriceville and feature several hill climbs finishing with a gruelling 3km climb to the top of Rangitumau Hill.
“Race four will be really hard and it’s the one everyone has been waiting for, and I won’t be surprised if we get new leaders in some categories after this race” Sandoval said.
The Rangitumau Hill has been used in the series for the past two years and promises to get many riders into the unknown”.
Wairarapa riders should come to the fore with their knowledge of the course, in particular the steep climb to the finish.
Mark Langlands, riding for the Coupland's Bakeries/Booth's Group in category one, comes into the race in 11th place, and could move up the points table with another strong showing. Second place George Jackson and NZ Cycling Project teammate Henry Levett, in sixth place, are others expected to shine in the top division.
In category two, Brent Backhouse from Meo GP looks to be the strongest hill climber, along with Matthew Stevens from BDO Cycling and Simon Dowset from I Ride.
Category three is where the Wairarapa riders could put into practice all their hard training in home territory over the past couple of months.
Cameron Wood from Wheelwoks team is currently leading the category by two points form Dale Nicholls from Bike Manawatu with local Tararua Builders team riders Eric D'arbois third and Rangitumau resident Dominic Green in fourth place.
Judy Cheng from Wheelwork team is leading the women’s category with Bex Hutchinson and Marisa Shubert, both from The Chain Breakers team in second and third place.
Tararua Builders are well-placed to push for the lead in category four. The team made up of Wairarapa riders is on 28 points, only four behind leaders Bike Manawatu.
Sandoval said, this is the race that local riders really want to win, and they have a great chance..
“I know how much effort the Tararua Builders riders have put into training and preparing especially for this race over the last two months. I believe this Sunday could be their day if they race as a team and have all their riders in the leading bunch at the bottom of the hill. From there is all about who have the climbing legs on the day” Sandoval said.