Kelly Decimates Field in Solo Ride
Polkemmet Road Handicap
Sunday 19th June 2011
Horsham cycling powerhouse Dennis Kelly rode through the entire field in an amazing solo effort to take out the Grampians Vets Polkemmet Road handicap last Sunday.
With strong winds and showers forecast, only a small field of dedicated riders fronted for the 54 kilometre event. However, after looking threatening at the start, the sky cleared and the sun shone for much of the event.
The small field meant that Kelly was the lone scratch rider, giving Drew Heard, Daryl Elliott and Stuart King a two minute start. However, this was not a problem, as Kelly made up the deficit after the first twenty kilometres, going straight to the front of the bunch and then lifting the pace.
This group soon reeled in the 5 minute riders Tom Eldridge, Tony Rathgeber and Peter Parnaby about eight kilometres later, picking up Parnaby as they passed.
On the next hill, Kelly’s pace was too hot, and he rode away from the other four riders, gradually building his lead. With about five kilometres to go, he overtook the two limit riders Meg Parnaby and John McIntyre, before going on to win by over one minute.
With a kilometre to go, the chase was on for the minor placings, with the two minute bunch only a few hundred metres behind the two limit riders, and gaining fast. However, the limit riders rose to the occasion, with Meg Parnaby taking out second place and John McIntyre third.
Kelly’s time was 1 hour, 25 minutes 9 seconds, and average of 37.8kph, most of it ridden solo in less than ideal conditions.