Armidale rider eyes the Alice
ARMIDALE’S Holly Harris will use this weekend’s Evocities Stan’s NoTubes Tamworth 5hr as a final hit-out for the upcoming Redback Stage Race at Alice Springs later this month.
And the New England Mountain Bike Club 20-year-old has the next 12 months already pencilled into her schedule.
After Tamworth she’ll set her sights on the Redback before turning her attention to the national titles in Bright (Victoria) next March where she hopes to regain her national Under 23 title.
That slipped from her grasp at this year’s titles when she suffered a slight sickness attack at the finish.
“She was beaten only inches on the line,” her dad and fellow competitor David Harris said.
Though David won’t be pulling on his mountain biking gear this weekend.
He’s been handed the label of commissaire – “we’re responsible for the enforcing of rules”.
Then if successful in Bright, Holly will prepare for another attempt at the World Championships in Europe next year.
Her only assault on that was 23rd in Africa when competing in the Under 19 division.
“This is the first race of the Evocities series she’s ridden in but she’s quite confident of doing well this weekend,” her dad said.
“She’s riding very fast now, and has really lifted her training.”
Holly has taken to the mountain bike racing like a duck to water.
“She used to watch me compete, then said to me one day, ‘dad, I can do better than that’.
“And she has – she’s been much more successful anyway.”
David Harris will juggle commissaire and watching Holly with following the efforts of his younger outfit as coach of the NIAS Mountain Bike squad.
“We’ll be bringing six riders to Tamworth –all to compete in the open,” he said.
“ The sport has been in NIAS for two years now, after I convinced them that mountain biking needed recognition regionally.
“And it has become very popular.”
The six riders representing the NIAS team this weekend will be Moree’s Josh and Nick Chisholm, Walcha’s Jack Feltham, and Armidale’s Emily Wooster, Isabella Hosking and Michael Harris.
Inverell couple in for long ride together
INVERELL’S Brad Newman is a sales manager for Bindaree Beef and his fiancee Jodi Mayled wears the manager’s tag for Leonard’s Chicken in the local IGA store.
So there could be differing opinions on what to serve for the evening meal.
But there won’t be any arguments this weekend when the couple, as Team Brodie, take on rivals in the mixed pairs division of the Stan’s NoTubes Tamworth 5hr at Tamworth Mountain Bike Park.
While the Tamworth round will be the first in the seven-race series to be attempted by Team Brodie, the north-west has been good to them.
Back in February last year they grabbed a “comfortable” victory in the Armidale Mountain Bike Club’s 12hr Piney (contested in the pine forests) event.
“We also did the Northern Inland Cross Country Series at Tamworth in the individual division,” Brad said. “ I was about fourth and Jodi finished near the front of the bunch.”
They are confident they can finish near the front again tomorrow.
“There’s a couple of strong teams in it and, while we probably won’t be in the first two or three, we should be thereabouts.
“The Tamworth circuit is good too, with nice flowing corners then some fairly rocky sections.”