Philippa Hindmarsh is ready to hit the track tonight.
Philippa Hindmarsh is ready to hit the track tonight. ALLAN REINIKKA

Hindmarshs on track for a win

CYCLIST Philippa Hindmarsh competed in no more than three competitions in 2009 and yet she faces a hefty handicap in the main wheelrace of the CQUniversity Rockhampton Cup on Wheels tonight.

But the 19-year-old takes her back marker position - which puts her in the back pack of about 16 female riders - in good spirits.

“I guess it is an honour to be scratch mark,” Hindmarsh said yesterday.

“But I think the handicap was looking at my past results and not my recent ones.

“So it means I will have to do a full three laps whereas others would maybe two and a half - there is 25 metres before the next rider in front of me.”

The main women’s race, Capricornia Cup on Wheels, combines the A, B and C grades in a 1600 metre race with various handicaps that provides the opportunity for any competitor - no matter what division - a chance to win.

Hindmarsh said there was a lot more to the race than the level of competitors and where the cyclists start.

“It depends, if your are at the back it might be better in the way that you are with a big group of people instead of being up the front on your own and having to do it all by yourself,” she said.

But despite the set back for Hindmarsh, who took a year off competitive racing due to work and university commitments, she still is a contender for the wheelrace among other events.

The petite cyclist led a strong cycling career when she was a junior, which included representing the Australian cycling team in Mexico in 2007.

She said making the team was her highlight and peak of her career and she hopes to pick up competitive racing again when she graduates university.

“I am working and at university – I still do club racing but not as much as I did or wanted to,” she said.

“Once everybody leaves school and gets a job or goes to university, it just gets harder especially with money and travelling.”

Hindmarsh will take to the track against more of Rockhampton’s fast females, such as Taylah Jennings, Alex O’Dea, and Meaghan Adair.

The men’s wheelrace, the Rockhampton Cup on Wheels, will have nearly four times as many competitors but will also be packed with local cyclists.

Lindsay McMaster will be one of the top contenders for the title and will receive the same handicap that he had when he took out the Rockhampton Cup on Wheels in 2007.

Josh Edwards of Rockhampton Cycling Club said the handicap of 50 metres will be a good start for McMaster.

“He was on 50 when won it last time so it will be good for him,” Edwards said.

In 2009 McMaster also gained more strength and fitness, which led him to victory in Townsville in December.

The 23-year-old took out first in the elite keirin event and third in the elite 4000m individual pursuit at the state titles.

The CQUniversity Rockhampton Cup on Wheels will start today at 4pm at the Kenrick Tucker Velodrome with the main wheelraces to kick off at about 8.30pm.

To get the full coverage and results of the two-day carnival, pick up Monday’s edition of the Morning Bulletin.



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