Mudgee’s Jordan Payne finished second to former NSW criterium champion Craig Hutton at the 2013 Western Division Criterium Championships at Bathurst’s Mount Panorama.
Hutton, who will ride for the Western Australian based Bianchi Lotto Arbitrage Team in 2014, took out the elite division one title on the weekend.
After an aggressive race which included attacks from a number of the major contenders it was Hutton and Payne whom broke clear late in the event and fought out the top title.
Payne tried his trade mark late attack on the final hill of the race but Hutton quickly shut it down and won the dash to the line.
Last year’s runner-up Steve Bennett out-sprinted Rhyle Baker to take the bronze, with Jarrod Bell taking fifth in front of Zac Baker.
Mudgee riders Anthony Fuller and Joel Burke tried a late attack in the division two title but Mark Simons sacrificed himself to put the Bathurst riders back into contention.
Promising youngster Paddy Corcoran won a very tight finish with former Butler Trophy winner Billy Hutton, with Matt Cowley third in front of Karl Addison and Damien Bennett.
Division three was also a tactical battle with young Bathurst stars Hollie Simons and Josh Stapley breaking clear and establishing a winning lead.
However sensing the race was slipping away from the peloton, Orange rider Drew Tuckwell and Mudgee’s Chris Densley combined well to bring back the Bathurst riders.
This gave Bathurst sprinter Darryl Thorncraft his opportunity, however, he kicked early and both David Jones and the rapidly improving Jim Lavis claimed him on the line.
Fourth went to Rod Esdaile who attacked off the front of the peloton numerous times during the event and fifth to Josh Corcoran
Recently name Bathurst Track Rider of the Year Steve Thorncraft took out the division four title when he surged clear on the final lap.
In fact, Thorncraft looked likely to break clear earlier in the event but Renee Covington showed plenty of endurance to bring the field back together.
The move was a good one for her son with the promising Tanner Covington-Gorst kicking past Greg Vinall to take the silver medal with Jack Rumble and Rosemary Hastings rounding out the top five.
In the junior championships, honours where shared in the boys’ divisions with Mudgee’s Lachlan Burke winning the under 13s boys from Bathurst’s Noah Cowley.
Orange’s Luke Tuckwell won the under 11s title and Bathurst’s Cadel Lovett took out the under nines from teammate Cohen Cowley and Orange’s Xavier Blavel.
It was a good day for the Robinsons in the girls categories with Ebony Robinson winning the under 11s title and her sister Kalinda defeating state champion Eliza Bennett in the under 13s championship.
n Western Division Criterium Champions results:
Division one: 1. Craig Hutton, 2. Jordan Payne, 3. Steve Bennett, 4. Rhyle Barker, 5. Jarrod Bell.
Division two: 1. Paddy Corcoran, 2. Billy Hutton, 3. Matt Cowley, 4. Karl Addison, 5. Damien Bennett.
Division three: 1. David Jones, 2. Jim Lavis, 3. Darryl Thorncraft, 4. Rod Esdaile, 5. Josh Corcoran.
Division four: 1. Steve Thorncraft, 2. Tanner Covington-Gorst, 3. Greg Vinall, 4. Jack Rumble, 5. Rosemary Hastings.
Under 13s Champions: Boys - Lachlan Burke (Mudgee); Girls - Kalinda Robinson (Bathurst).
Under 11s Champions: Boys – Luke Tuckwell (Orange).
Under nines Champions: Boys – Cadel Lovett (Bathurst); Girls - Ebony Robinson (Bathurst).