CHAMPIONS CROWNED AS REEF TO REEF HITS THE BEACH
CHAMPIONS CROWNED AS REEF TO REEF HITS THE BEACH
First-time winners and defending champions have stood on the top step of the podium as Reef to Reef finished off four-days of action-packed racing on the iconic Four Mile Beach in Port Douglas.
Riders started the day at Mount Molloy, making their way through the stunning Tropical North Queensland scenery before hitting the famous Bump Track for a fast and furious descent to the beach. The 46km stage finished with a blast up Four Mile Beach to the finish line.
Tasman Nankervis and Alex Lack claimed the overall men’s title, ahead of Brendan Johnston and Jon Odams, with Nathan Mummery and Alex Diorietes third.
Johnston and Odams were first across the line in Sunday’s final stage, just over a minute clear of Nankervis and Lack, with Nankervis and Lack taking the overall title by almost nine minutes.
“It was good, we were in control in the first half and then it got quite gnarly, big holes and things like that so we were a bit cautious in there, we got a gap in the middle of the race but then they came back to us,” said Nankervis. “Then we went through this grassy patch and got wrapped up, had to stop and fix that so there was a little gap, once these guys went onto the bump track first we weren’t willing to take too many risks down there, it was a good way to finish.
“This is one of the premier events of the year, it’s so hard to win with the pairs as well, you’ve got to get someone that’s compatible with you, the same level of fitness, but also someone you can work well together with, it’s hard to win a pairs event I reckon,” he said.
Nankervis won the Reef to Reef solo men’s title in 2019, backing it up to win as a pair with Lack this year.
“It feels pretty good, Tasman is such a good rider to ride with, I was definitely a nail today, I was hurting a lot but got through it and finished it off,” said Lack. “It was good fun, it was pretty rough, we didn’t want to take too many risks, we had a fair bit of a gap to second so kept it safe and then drove it along the beach to finish it off.”
Emma Viotto and Karl Michelin-Beard were victorious in the mixed pairs, claiming the title by almost four minutes from Peta Mullens and Jarrod Moroni, with Holly Harris and Mitch Docker Third.
In a similar finish to the men’s pairs race, Mullens and Moroni won the final stage by less than a minute from overall champions Viotto and Michelin-Beard.
“It was good to have the top three mixed pairs riding together for most of the race, it was fun, it was fast, and that last section is amazing, it sort of rewards you, all those first lumpy bits and fire road, the single track was beautiful,” said Viotto. “It’s pretty special, it’s always nice to be here with Karl, we wouldn’t be first if it wasn’t for all of his little pushes that he gives me, maybe lots of pushes. It’s a different dynamic racing in pairs and I really like it and I think it’s good to see more and more people doing it, couples, partners, girls, it’s good.
“It was beautiful coming up the beach, knowing that we had the time it was actually nice to look around, normally we’re grovelling and looking for the finish, it was nice to be able to enjoy the scenery here, it’s so beautiful,” she said.
This year’s event was Viotto and Michelin-Beard’s third trip to Reef to Reef, with the pair finally standing on the top step of the podium after finishing second on both previous visits.
“We’ve come here twice before, for the inaugural Reef to Reef and then in 2019 and we’ve always come second so it’s nice to finally get the win,” said Michelin-Beard. “I think yesterday was a good day for us, getting a lot of time is always nice, it allows us to relax a bit more today and ride it safe.”
Anna Beck and Karen Hill finished the event as they started it, by taking victory in the women’s pairs. The duo have been the team to beat all week, taking the title by more than two hours ahead of Sharon Dean and Monique Ralph, with Morna Nielsen and Kathryn Drew third.
“I had a pretty good day today, we did a bit of a role reversal, Karen was feeling it a bit so we sort of paced ourselves a bit better,” said Beck. “We really did a good effort before the bump track to get ahead of some roadies and other riders and had a bit of a gap, finishing on the beach is just so refreshing, it’s so nice.
“It’s always fun, whether winning or just in it for the mix, it’s just a good week away, happy that we could do it but even if we couldn’t we would have had an awesome time,” she said. “We had a bit of everything today, we were in a bunch a bit further back today and the pace was a bit nicer to begin with, then we popped into the beautiful rainforest and out onto the beach, a bit of everything, it was really nice.”
Victory today made it back-to-back Reef to Reef titles for Beck, with Hill winning for the first time.
“It’s so nice to finish, today was probably the hardest day for me, I felt pretty good for the first three days and then I was definitely getting hammered today, it’s damn nice to hit the sand and get across the finish line,” said Hill.
The final day of Reef to Reef featured the 30th anniversary of the famous Triple-R, with hundreds of riders taking on either the 48km or 35km events.
Stephen Knott won the 48km Triple-R event, crossing the finish line on Four Mile Beach in 1:47:01, two minutes clear of Rinaldo Lookene, with Lennon Colclough third.
Chris Cochrane was first over the line in the 35km event, finishing in 1:19:41, almost a minute ahead of Joshua Rayner, with Maxwell Foley third.
Reef to Reef is supported by the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland and features on the It’s Live! in Queensland events calendar.
Reef to Reef – Stage 4 Results
1. Giant Australia Off-Road Team P/B Shimano – Brendan Johnston & Jon Adams – 1:33:47
2. Tasman and the Tasmanian - Tasman Nankervis & Alex Lack – 1:34:51
3. Cheese Graters – Nathan Mummery & Alex Diorietes – 1:42:32
1. Roxsolt X Rolla – Peta Mullens & Jarrod Moroni – 1:44:22
2. Shimano MyRide – Emma Viotto & Karl Michelin-Beard- 1:45:17
3. Risky Business – Holly Harris & Mitch Docker- 1:48:56
1. Millennial Forest Avocado Warriors P/B Velocio – Anna Beck & Karen Hill – 1:50:33
2. Two Girls, Two Bikes – Sharon Dean & Monique Ralph – 2:25:13
3. Willow Lane Ski Team – Morna Nielsen & Kathryn Drew – 2:26:04
Reef to Reef – General Classification
1. Tasman and the Tasmanian - Tasman Nankervis & Alex Lack – 6:08:52
2. Giant Australia Off-Road Team P/B Shimano – Brendan Johnston & Jon Adams – 6:17:13
3. Cairns Airport – Nathan Sandford & Dominic Hoyal – 6:35:59
1. Shimano MyRide – Emma Viotto & Karl Michelin-Beard- 6:48:58
2. Roxsolt X Rolla – Peta Mullens & Jarrod Moroni – 6:52:22
3. Risky Business – Holly Harris & Mitch Docker- 7:01:04
1. Millennial Forest Avocado Warriors P/B Velocio – Anna Beck & Karen Hill – 7:11:10
2. Two Girls, Two Bikes – Sharon Dean & Monique Ralph – 9:39:32
3. Willow Lane Ski Team – Morna Nielsen & Kathryn Drew – 9:42:54
Triple-R – 48km Results
1. Stephen Knott – 1:47:01
2. Rinaldo Lookene – 1:49:04
3. Lennon Colclough – 1:54:14
Triple-R – 35km Results
1. Chris Cochrane – 1:19:41
2. Joshua Rayner – 1:20:32
3. Maxwell Foley – 1:22:21