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Annual Denmark Handicap the first road race of the year for Albany Cycle Club

Albany Cycle Club’s first road race of the year was held in a rather warm Denmark on the popular but challenging ‘teardrop’ circuit.

With the McLeod road climb as its centrepiece, the course has a demanding mix of climbing and descending allowing all types of riders the opportunity to score a win.

Roadworks forced a shortening of the course but the oppressive conditions meant the reduced length was no less arduous.

Using a handicap format, allowing all riders the chance to ride for the win, competitors set off in small groups from the start at Rockcliffe.

Groups then followed at six, nine, 15 and 17 minutes, with the last group off at 29 minutes with a long chase ahead of them.

As the groups approached the top of Scotsdale and the gradient increased, gaps started to appear in the lines but most were together for the descent into the teardrop.

In the end it all came down to a nail-biting sprint finish with Ryan McLaren and Richard Millar dead-heating for first.

They finished with a time of 1hr. 26min. 49secs at 31.4km/h.

Paul McMurtrie rode well to claim third from Paul Gibson and Mark Guerin who rounded out the top five.

The fastest time of 1:12:10 at an average speed of 37.7km/h was shared by the scratch riders Quinton Stevens and Brett Dal Pozzo.

The club thanks volunteers doing the signs, marshalling and timekeeping for their contribution to the running of the race.

Racing returns to Denmark at the end of July but in the meantime the next event is the Mt Clarence Hill Climb on May 21 at 2pm.

And for those who don’t mind a bit of dirt under their tyres, there’s a gravel ride on May 7 starting from Torbay Hall at 8am.

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