Luke Davison (Budget Forklifts) won the 2012 CCCC 50km Points Classic tonight in front of a good crowd after a see-sawing race long battle with 2006 Commonwealth Games Points Race champion Sean Finning (Jayco VIS). The imminent rain held off just long enough for the race to be run as scheduled.
Raced over 135 grueling laps of the fast outdoor Packer Park velodrome, the winner covered the distance in a quick time of 1:03:44, an average speed of 47.1kmh.
Finning took a commanding early lead after dominating the early sprints. Sprint points were awarded every 10 laps from 120 to go down to the ‘half way’ double points sprint at 70 to go. At that point, Finning led young team mate Jack Cummings 21 points to 15, with Davidson on 11 points. All three were among a break of seven that had worked well to take a lap on the field.
From that point, sprints came every five laps, and Davison steadily pegged back the deficit, before hitting the front at 45 laps to go to lead 27 to 25. The pair traded sprint wins over the next 20 laps, with the margin still in Davison’s favour, 35 to 34. Davison won the next two sprints with Finning out of the places and moved 11 points clear, only for Finning to match that effort by claiming the sprints at 10 and 5 laps to race to leave the score at 45 to 44 in Davison’s favour.
The final sprint was also worth double points, and with the margin so close, the win would go to whoever did better in the final sprint. Davison led out and had plenty in reserve to hold off Finning’s final charge to run out the winner 55 points to 50.
Budget Forklift’s second rider in the field and a former winner of the event, Mark O’Brien, got stronger as the night wore on and overhauled local favourite Alex Smyth (Plan B Racing) in the final few sprints to finish in third place on 26 points.
Davison and Finning’s dominance was briefly threatened in the closing laps by a strong solo effort from German star Marcel Barth, who gained half a lap on the leading bunch, but the pair were able to put their personal battle on hold long enough to join forces and neutralise Barth’s attack. Just 10 riders were able to finish the tough race.
Thanks as always go to the volunteers and officials on the night. The CCCC team was lead by Doug Moody, Frank Cipriano and Penny Robinson, while the Cycling Victoria Commisaires panel led by Bob Johsntone included Matt Wright, Brian and Marlene Reeves, Doug Reynolds and Daniel Griffin.
(2012) - CCCC 50km Points Classic
1 Luke Davison NSW 55
2 Sean Finning Castlemaine 50
3 Mark O’Brien Horsham 26
4 Alex Smyth CCCC 22
5 Alex Morgan Blackburn 10
6 Marcel Barth Germany 8
7 Tom Hamilton Ararat & District 26 1 lap down
8 Miles Scotsman Port Adelaide 10 1 lap down
9 George Tansley Central Districts 9 1 lap down
10 Robert-Jon McCarthy Sturt Holdfast Marion 1 2 laps down