Jason Christie (Beads of Europe) produced an impressive ride yesterday to win the Nelson Bays Motor Group elite men's 10km time trial, clocking in at 11 minutes and 38 seconds, 8 seconds clear of Regan Gough (CHB Cycling) and 21 seconds ahead of Sam Friend (Pegasus) in third.
These three were the only riders to go under the 12 minutes, edging out classy competition in the form of Jack Bauer and George Bennett.
While 12 to 15 minutes spent on the road competing in the Woollaston Estates Tineli Tour de Vineyards Prologue represented not much time, it was certainly enough to inflict all sorts of anguish on bodies as they were pushed to their absolute limits. Depending on who the rider was, there was pressure to perform.
Those wanting to rank highly on the general classification had to bury themselves on a mixed course comprising of a start facing into a headwind, a lengthy false-flat rise and two short, punchy climbs.
Included among those with hopes for an overall tour win was today's Elite Women's TT winner, Emily Collins, who stopped the clock at 13 mins 37 secs, eight seconds ahead of Rena Trotman (Cycling Otago) and 25secs ahead of third place finisher Britta Martin (Scotty Browns).
Collins says she has been working on her time trialling ability over the past 12 months.
"I've slowly improved my time trial this year. I've never really been a fan of it. I've changed my training and followed the advice of my Wiggle Honda team-mates. Having Linda Villumsen and the British Team Pursuit girls, who won gold at the last Olympics, has been really beneficial for me as I have picked up helpful tips from them and have carefully watched what they are doing."
For others, today's TT was a chance to play to their strengths, as was the case for Marlborough's Ray Dunstan (Cuddon Cycling) who bludgeoned the course in a time of 12 min 16 seconds, a staggering 61 seconds ahead of the fourth placed finisher. Dunstan, who will ride in support of his team-mate for the remainder of the tour, was very happy to come away with the TT win in the Masters' Field. His feat is all the more impressive considering he is racing in the M4 category, the most senior masters' race division in the tour. Tomorrow he rides in yellow around the Woollaston Estates Tineli sponsored Moutere Circuit, along with Warwick Spence of Tasman Wheelers (12:45)
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