Connor McCaig doubles up feature race wins in Bendigo and Wangaratta


CONNOR McCaig has ended the cycling year in style by taking victory in the 80-lap madison on night one of the Bendigo Christmas carnival.

The 16-year-old Bendigo and District Cycling Club rider teamed with Victorian Institute of Sport athlete Godfrey Slattery to outgun a field of 12 in the Thursday night feature at Tom Flood Sports Centre.

It continued a big week for McCaig, who claimed a win in the 2000m Winsec Wangaratta Wheelrace on Wednesday night, off 50 metres.

The in-form teenager is hoping to add to his win haul in Friday night’s 2000m Lindsay Harrington Memorial Wheelrace.

McCaig said he was stoked to get the victory after he and Slattery had led the bulk of the race.

“It’s my first ever madison win,” he said.

“I’ve just come off a few big races and to pull that one off was a pretty big achievement.

“Godfrey is in the VIS, so he’s a good cyclist to be riding with – he’s been to the junior worlds.

“We were rushing bit to get the win, so it was good to hang on.”

The Melbourne pairing of Bill Simpson and Angus Collins finished second, four points behind McCaig and Slattery, with fellow Bendigo rider Isaac Buckell and Callan Douglas third.

McCaig rated the win among his top few in the sport, but slightly underneath his emphatic Wangaratta wheelrace win.

It capped a big few weeks for his family after sister Alessia’s win in this month’s  junior women’s Austral Wheelrace in Melbourne.

Alessia backed up with a win the women’s 17 A eight-lap scratch race.

She was also fourth in the under-17 Victorian Scratch Race Championships.

Connor said the siblings enjoyed a healthy rivalry in terms of results, but were always there to spur each other on.

McCaig was not the only Bendigo rider to stand atop the podium on day one of the two-day carnival.

Jasmine continued the good form which won her the junior women’s 15 scratch event on Austral Wheelrace night by claiming a win in the 1000m under-15 wheelrace final.

A trio of Bendigo riders – Chase Hadden, Archie Powell and Hunter Gartside – filled the placings in the under-11 wheelrace final.

Alex Allott won the men’s 17A eight-lap scratch race, while Mitchell Morley proved too strong for his rivals in the junior 11 B four-lap scratch race.

Braeden Dean is eyeing off the Lindsay Harrington memorial after a successful start to the carnival.

The 21-year-old won men’s A-grade scratch race over eight-laps on Thursday.

Other Bendigo winners included Rob Gartside (men’s E-grade elimination); Connor McCaig (men’s B-grade elimination); Braeden Dean (men’s three-lap Aces); Edie Hayley (women’s B-grade motorpace); and Jordan Lucas (men’s D-grade motorpace).

Senior racing on Friday gets underway at 5pm.