AFTER four years of trying without success, Harrison Carter finally cliched the winner’s sash Neville Smith Memorial Roller Derby at the Goulburn Track Power Carnival on Saturday.
With less than a month before the Cycling Australia track nationals, the roller derby success showed that Carter’s preparation is coming along nicely.
The Bathurst talent clinched the prize with a strong ride in the two-man, 500 metres final, beating former victor David Browne.
“It’s kind of my goal for Goulburn, it’s really fun and it’s the Neville Smith Memorial Derby. He was killed in a light plane accident I think they said 11 years ago, and it means a lot to their club,” Carter said.
“It’s invitational only, so to get a start in that was really exciting. That was my fifth time getting a start in the invitational roller derby and I’d never won it.
“I was really excited, it’s what I had shifted my focus to.
“It was a good event for me a month out from nationals to see where I am at, to see if I can put the power out.”
Carter began the carnival with a win in the heart-starter scratch race and given he had done a road training session prior to hitting the track, it was a result which built his confidence.
He qualified for the wheel race decider, won the keiran and took out another scratch race, but it was the roller derby success which really pleased the Team D2f rider.
“We started with eight people and we all did a heat and the winners progressed through to the semi-final, so it’s just win or you’re out. It was just two people in the final,” he said.
“Each round of the roller derby was 500 metres and we were doing it in a bit over 10 seconds-11 seconds because on the rollers there is going to be a bit of fatigue, you’re doing over 90 kilometres an hour.
“It was pretty fun, you are really spinning fast and you’re doing it in-between your actual races on the track. You’re pretty buggered – you jump off, get on the rollers, race, get back on the track.
“It was all pretty exciting, but I really wanted to win the roller derby. They had a nice pink sash up for grabs, it’s always good to take a sash home as sometimes your results get forgotten, but when you get to take home a memento it’s really cool, you always remember it because you can see it there hanging on your wall.
“To know that race means something to the Goulburn club is also really cool, it makes it more special.”
Carter was not the only member of the Bathurst Cycling Club to impress at the carnival, which attracted riders from as far away as Darwin.
Tyler Puzicha found success in the under 15s women’s events while the women’s feature wheel race saw Rosemary Hastings place second and Marian Renshaw fifth.
“Rosey had a really good ride, she got second in the handicap, it was great to see her hold on for that one and she almost got the win,” Carter said. “Kalinda [Robinson] had a pretty good day, she hung on for the win in her handicap and she won a keiran and I think Eliza [Bennett] won a kerian as well. Everyone from Bathurst had a very good day.”
The track nationals will be staged in Brisbane from January 1-4.