There'll be no rest for Steve Fairless after returning from a successful trip to Austria with a busy schedule ahead of him.By Marc McGowan
A break from the bike last weekend was just reward for Shepparton cyclist Steve Fairless as he takes aim at a strong finish to another successful year.
Fairless returned only last week from a month-long trip to Austria, where he competed — and dominated — for a second straight year, and has set himself for a busy upcoming schedule.
The 51-year-old, as reported in The News last week, won three of the six races to take overall honours in the 50-to-54 age group from Russian Yuri Demanov in an aggregate series in Hartberg, Austria.
Demanov slashed more than a minute off Fairless’ lead in the final time trial stage, but the latter — not using a specialist bike — still had 46 seconds to spare.
Fairless, straight from a bitterly cold Shepparton winter, contended with temperatures approaching 40°C.
He also claimed the world trophy race — the last of a series of individual events in St Johann, following his Hartberg success.
‘‘It was good, after an ordinary start. I had a pretty good time of it in the middle of the series and had enough up my sleeve to win overall,’’ Fairless said.
‘‘It’s just a good trip. Four or five of us go each year and it’s a bloody beautiful part of the world.
‘‘Three of the others and myself were racing together as teenagers, so, as time’s gone on, everybody’s got back on their bikes and once I did we ventured back.’’
Cobram’s Ray Jarratt was among those he travelled with.
Fairless said competing against the state’s best cyclists at home served him well against rivals his age in Austria.
‘‘That’s the beauty of racing in the elites over here and then racing over there,’’ he said.
‘‘I race here at a pretty high level then you go over there and it’s not easy, but it makes you competitive.’’
Fairless is contesting Amy’s Gran Fondo on Sunday in Lorne then he and Mooroopna’s Trent Stevenson will compete in the Midlands Tour at Anglesea from September 21.
Then comes the season’s biggest test: the 262
Fairless will return to age-group racing again after that at the Australian Masters Road Championships at Goulburn between October 18 to 20.
It’s been a long journey for Tim Roadley but his dream of creating a multi-sport endurance event on the Murray River is now going to be a reality.
It was a big day for Jye McNeil on Sunday, not only celebrating his 19th birthday, but riding a double at the Tatura and Shepparton Racing Club’s meeting, including the big one, the Vraca and Varapodio Italian Plate (1600 m), on the Gerald Egan-trained Jetconi.
More than 100 ex-battery and free-range hens now call Marie Traill's Timmering property home.
The Elmore Events Centre Events are confident it will get $500,000 grant from the Federal Government.
Waste collection in Campaspe Shire will change for two weeks during the festive season.
Less than a week after celebrating a $500 000 boost to one of our region’s premier tourist attractions, those behind it have been left to clean up some mindless vandalism.
Heathcote Health officially opened its new office and launched its new service plan on Friday.
The costs of growing grain in the southern cropping region don’t look like falling any time soon, meaning farmers and business managers need to be mindful of keeping farm expenses in check.
Residents are encouraged to shop locally this festive season while getting invovled with celebrations across Benalla.
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