I’m too NCXsey for my podcast

Oenone Wood riding through the woods at Nundah, NCXS Round 2

Oenone Wood riding through the woods at Nundah, NCXS Round 2

OK, so basically it was an awesome weekend of cyclocross racing, and I managed to speak to some people.

So here’s a special episode of the podcast, featuring post-race interviews with LJ and Oenone and Vandy and Blood and Chris Aitken. Some interviews by me, some by Robbie McEwen.


Thunder down Nundah!! Millburn takes dramatic Round 2 in Qld NCXS weekend

Garry Millburn leads Chris Jongewaard over the barriers.

Garry Millburn leads Chris Jongewaard over the barriers. Pic by John Peters.

Garry Millburn (NSW) won a dramatic Round 2 of the Elite Mens National Cyclocross Series at Nundah today, beating Chris Aitken (NSW) and Chris Jongewaard (SA) through the application of relentless pressure in the finale.

National champion and series leader Lisa Jacobs (Vic) completed a clean sweep of the weekend in the Elite Womens race, defeating Melissa Anset (Vic) and Oenone Wood (NSW).

The positioning of a double barrier in the lead-up to the last couple of turns before the sprint proved to be crucial in the men’s race, and Millburn handled the barriers faster and better than Aitken and Jongewaard.

Barriers played a major role in the previous day’s race at Nerang, where the two barriers were placed on different parts of the course. Round 1 race winner Paul Van Der Ploeg and Aussie champion Jongewaard both gained vital seconds by bunny-hopping those barriers each time. Millburn and Aitken were dismounting and running the barriers.

But at the Nundah-drome for Round 2, the barriers proved to be the undoing of both Van Der Poeg and Jongewaard.

Much of the chat pre-race revolved around a particularly muddy creek crossing, but in the race all elite riders took the same line at the creek, going a slightly longer, less direct, but safer line.

The risk vs reward equation was different at the barriers.

Early on both Van Der Ploeg and Jongewaard were jumping the barriers, which were spaced about six metres apart. A lead group had formed comprising Aitken, Millburn, Van De Ploeg, Jongewaard, Tom Chapman (SA) and Allan Iacuone (Vic).

But only a couple of laps in, Van Der Ploeg crashed over the bars on the second barrier, catching his back wheel. Van Der Ploeg chased hard throughout the race, but never regained the front group.

Van Der Ploeg’s accident also split Chapman and Iacuone off the back of the lead group, and when it all shook down, the leading trio was Aitken, Millburn and Jongewaard. Iacuone and Chapman raced consistently behind the leaders to finish in fourth and fifth.

Jongewaard seemed like the dominant personality in the leading group. He is a vastly experienced rider, who has won many many races in CX, mountain biking and road racing.

But about halfway through the race, it was Jongewaard’s turn to stack it over the second barrier. He chased the leaders and got back on within about half a lap, and got a big cheer from the crowd when he successfully jumped the barriers the next lap around.

But it was on the final lap that the tactics really came to the fore. Millburn surged to the front, and ran the barriers at full speed. Jongewaard tried to pass him by bunny-hopping, but once again failed to clear the second barrier with his rear wheel. The champ was down, and in the process he slightly impeded Aitken.

So it was Millburn who sprinted clear down the finishing straight to take his first NCXS race win. Aitken finished second and took the series lead. Jongewaard was third.

Local organiser and the local cyclocross crowd are seeing the Queensland rounds of the NCXS as a great success. The racing was of a standard never before seen in Queensland, the courses were designed to make the most of the natural features of each venue, and it was great to see the racers respond so positively.

In the Elite women, Lisa Jacobs turned the two-race weekend into a cyclocross clinic, riding so smoothly and strongly that the rest of the small field had no chance of staying with her. In an interview after the first race, Lisa said that Oenone Wood was someone she looked up to when she (Lisa) first came into cycling, and it was an honour for her to be racing against Wood.

But on the second day, Oenone found it difficult to back up, and said her lack of preparation for the event showed. Mel Anset came on strong on the second day to reverse the previous day’s results and take second place.

The depth of the Elite mens field is shown by the fact that there were two different race winners on the weekend (Van Der Ploeg and Millburn), but even so a third rider (Chris Aitken) took the series lead.

Millburn and Aitken are younger than most of their series rivals, and are well-placed to make this a season-long battle.

Lisa Jacobs is a deadset superstar.

Lisa Jacobs is a deadset superstar. John Peters photo.

Van Der Ploeg sprints to Round 1 win

Paul Van Der Ploeg celebrates his Round 1 NCXS win at Nerang today. Sholto Douglas photo.

Paul Van Der Ploeg celebrates his Round 1 NCXS win at Nerang today. Sholto Douglas photo.

Paul Van Der Ploeg used his undeniable power in the sprint to take the win in Elite Men Round 1 of the 2015 National Cyclocross Series in Nerang today, in a race that many of those present described as the best CX race yet in Queensland.

Van Der Ploeg (Victoria) outsprinted national champion Chris Jongewaard (SA) and rising star Chris Aitken (NSW) after the trio fought a race-long battle.

In Elite Women, national champion Lisa Jacobs (Vic) was smoothness personified as she outlasted former national road champion and road World Cup winner Oenone Wood (NSW) in second, and national marathon mountain bike champion Melissa Anset (Vic) in third.

The Elite Mens race had the biggest and most competitive field of the day with 34 elite and two under-19s on the start line. Race organiser, Gold Coast local and three-time Tour De France green jersey winner Robbie McEwen took to the start line in Elite Men, despite only completing media commitments seconds before the gun went off.

McEwen took the holeshot off the line, but was quickly swallowed up by Jongewaard and Van Der Ploeg. Chris Aitken joined the two powerhouses at the front, and this group were clearly the strongest in the race.

Jongewaard and Van Der Ploeg had technical superiority over Aitken, as they bunnyhopped the barriers twice each lap, gaining a valuable second or two each time, but Aitken’s surging attacks in the leg-sapping grass sections kept the other two fully extended. A couple of times it seemed like Aitken might get the gap, but each time one of the other two was able to respond enough to close it down.

On the last lap, Jongewaard surged past Aitken at the barriers, and was first onto the Nerang velodrome to wind up for the sprint, but the power of Van Der Ploeg was too much.

The second group on the track comprised another veteran and former national champion in Allan Iacuone (Vic), Paul Redenbach (Vic), Garry Millburn (NSW) and Tom Chapman (SA). That group couldn’t be separated for most of the hour-long race, until finally Milburn and Redenbach were able to break away, and finish fourth and fifth.

In the support races, the outstanding ride was in the Masters mens race which was dominated by another top class Australian bike rider, former World Cup winning downhiller Michael Ronning. Ronning, from Queensland, still competes at the highest level in gravity enduro mountain biking events around Australia, despite racing in the 40-45 age group, and his bike-handling skills and his impressive fitness were both on display in a comfortable win.

Round 2 of the National Cyclocross Series stays in Queensland tomorrow, with the race to be held at Nundah criterium circuit. The Nerang circuit featured a “spiral of doom”, and a wall which only the very best could ride. The Nundah circuit will feature a creek crossing which will guarantee that every finishing line photo will be of a muddy rider.

Chicks in the Sticks vs Skinny Men in the Mountains

Cathy Peel is brand new as a bike rider, but will try anything! This is at Bowl-o-cross recently, but next up she's riding a three-hour enduro mountain bike event.

Cathy Peel is brand new as a bike rider, but will try anything! This is at Bowl-o-cross recently, but next up she’s riding a three-hour enduro mountain bike event. Crazy, but awesome too.

Episode 15 of the Briztreadley pod. Chris Welsh and Andrew Demack are your hosts.

  • We lament the absence of Jordana ‘Birthday Girl’ Blackman, but fortunately we are joined in the studio by Cathy Peel, to tell us about ‘Chicks in the Sticks’, an innovative event being held on Sunday 23 August.
  • Also, we dial in Radio Adelaide’s finest Giro D’Italia pundits, Chris Komorek and Taylor Ryan, to find out how karma is affecting Alberto Contador.

Chick in the Sticks Vector logo 180 x 82 16-04-2015

Timothy Papandreou: Make mistakes, and make them often

A protected bikeway in San Francisco.

A protected bike lane in San Francisco. Quick and effective.

On episode 14 of the Briztreadley podcast, we speak to the keynote speaker for the Asia-Pacific Cycle Congress, to be held in Brisbane in September. His name is Timothy Papandreou.

And we also preview the 2015 Giro D’Italia, undaunted by the fact that the race is at least four stages old by the time any listeners hear the podcast. Thanks to Nicholas O’Donnell for the preview.

And we look ahead to some pretty cool events, coming up on the cycling calendar in Brisbane. You don’t want to miss …


  • Chris joins the BBTA. You should too!

A tour of Brookfield, a Welsh local legend, and a Dutch gentleman

Louise Jones ... a Welsh legend on the track and road, now living and coaching in Brisbane.

Louise Jones … a Welsh legend on the track and road, now living and coaching in Brisbane.

Plenty of variety in the Briztreadley podcast this week, with Chris Welsh (from Wales) and Andrew Demack (from Brisbane).

We speak to a local legend, Louise Jones (above).

We discover the link between the cobbled classics of Belgium and France, and the backroads of Brisbane, thanks to Ashley Everton and the Kangaroo Point Cycling Club.

And we chat to Martijn te Lintelo from Nijmegen, about what it is that Brisbane’s (and Australia’s) urban and transport planners can learn from The Netherlands.

Bike events mentioned this week

Send your feedback to feedback@briztreadley.com!




Briztreadley Episode 9: Nothing but cheese

IMG_0261.JPG-1Andrew and Chris hanging out in the Briztreadley studio, and comparing tasting notes about Towri Sheep Cheese.

See some photos from our Towri ride on Facebook.

And also some other stuff, including the first of our Local Legends, in Gino Cornacchia, and also the Oceania MTB championships from Toowoomba.

Don’t forget, if you are enjoying the show, please tell a friend about the Briztreadley podcast. We really need your word of mouth to spread this far and wide.

Rolling along from Beaudesert to Towri on a sunny Saturday.

Rolling along from Beaudesert to Towri on a sunny Saturday.

Today’s plan: Ride your bike, have fun and encourage women to ride also


So here’s Episode 8 of the Briztreadley podcast for 2015. And just in time, because there’s some time-specific information in this edition.

On Saturday 28 Feb, 4pm, there’s a Chickspiration event that will help fund Janine Jungfels’ UCI Trials World Cup campaign this year. Listen to Jordy and Andrew talk it up, and of course you’re going to go, or at least donate!

She Rides is a great encouragement and skills program for women, organised nationally by Cycling Australia. We talk to Vickie Burr from Redlands about her experience with the pilot program, and why it’s a great way to get more women into this male-dominated activity. Registrations close Sunday 1 March for the current series of programs, so act now!

Mountain bike orienteering … there really can’t be anything more likely to lead to family fun on a bike than that! Ideal for father-son bonding, or mother-daughter, father-daughter, mother-son, sister-brother, or even people who aren’t related to each other. We talk to Craig Steffens about an event coming up on Saturday 14th March. Check it out, it’s FREE.

And lastly we talk to Mark Fenner about Today’s Plan, and Andrew no longer has any excuse for failing to score points in B-grade in the Queensland Cyclocross series this year. Affordable training plans tailored to your needs! How could it go wrong?

The Briztreadley podcast, hosted this week by Andrew Demack and Jordana Blackman, with guests Craig Steffens, Vickie Burr and Mark Fenner.




Are you gonna sing along, bro?

I’m not a fan of your laddish downhillers really. But I laughed out loud at a bit at the end of this episode of ‘This Is Peaty’, where Josh Bryceland is on the podium at the Cairns round of the World Cup, with a very serious looking fellow Pom, winner of the round Gee Atherton.

As the PA is playing God Save The Queen, ‘Ratboy’ Bryceland turns to Gee and says: “Are you not gonna sing along, bro?”

Gee gives him a stony look. “No.”

Ratboy: “Yeah, I don’t know the words either.”

My goodness me, how you have grown!

I figure if I’m writing these race reports for Sean at Australian Cyclocross mag, I might as well post them here too! All pix by Sholto Douglas.

Qld CX uber-fuehrer B-rad, slicing through the singletrack section

Qld CX uber-fuehrer Brad, slicing through the singletrack section. 

Queensland cyclocross has grown quickly from its infancy just a couple of years ago. With the last of the autumn races yesterday at the Nundahdrome, QldCX is now an awkward teenager, all legs and arms and attitude, wearing oversized headphones and scowling at the other passengers on the train.

With more than 30 riders signed up in B grade for this event and 85 racers overall, organiser Brad Norman expects that we will be running separate A and B grade races in the winter series later this year.

Brisbane turned on a glorious warm autumn day, with a gorgeous blue sky. Would’ve been a nice day at the beach. Not really CX weather, but still the riders came in their droves.

Albert Bishop Park at Nundah is the home of a purpose-built road criterium circuit, and also the location for the new Hamilton Pine Rivers Wheelers club house. It was great to have quite a few juniors and riders in the open and B grade races, sporting the HPRW colours.

We are still having trouble getting many female racers. Most of the growth has been in the adult male categories. But with that said, we had our biggest junior (under 11) race so far as well at this race with 13 starters. Patrick Flood and Leroy Butler are well in charge of the juniors, and came home 1-2 again, with new boy Ciaran Casey third.

Connie hammering, Adam following. In the combined A and B race.

Connie hammering, Adam following. In the combined A and B race.

In A grade, a race-long battle between two of Queensland cyclocross’s favourite sons. Lawson Hartshorn has been racing CX since day one in Qld, and has consistently been among the best. It was Lawson’s last race before moving to Melbourne, and the Qld CX scene will miss him!

Lawson’s opponent in the two-man duel was a certain Robbie McEwen, a retired gent from the Gold Coast. The two broke away from Karl Wilson and Jason Smith who were having their own battle for the minor podium spot.

As hard as Hartshorn tried to drop McEwen, he couldn’t manage it. The course featured about 400 metres of ‘singletrack’ though a nearby patch of scrub, and lots of flowing sections on the grass infield of the criterium track. The race started and finished on the bitumen, and in a sprint it would be a shock of tsunami-esque proportions for Robbie McEwen to be beaten.  No earthquakes were recorded, and Robbie took the win.

Karl Wilson rounded out the podium.

Robbie, Lawson, Matt Williams (DNFed!) and Karl. A grade on the march.

Robbie, Lawson, Matt Williams (DNFed!) and Karl. A grade on the march.

Nothing between these two all race. Until the sprint!

Nothing between these two all race. Until the sprint!

In women’s A grade, two top local mountain bikers, Anna Beck and Connie Silvestri came along to give reigning Qld champ Sharon Heap a bit of competition. Anna Beck took out the win, first time out on her new CX bike, despite not feeling 100%, enough for her to skip the round of the Sunshine Cross-Country series the day before. Anna confirms her status as the favourite for the state title in Ipswich in late June.

One tough chick, Anna B. Sick as, but still smashed out 45 minutes in the blazing sun. And rode home later.

One tough chick, Anna B. Sick as, but still smashed out 45 minutes in the blazing sun. And rode home later.

In B grade, Darren Flood celebrated the debut of his shiny new Giant CX bike (something of a theme here, the number of new CX bikes continues to swell alarmingly) with a photo-finish win over Lan Bui. Rick Banaszcyzk forgot to bring his helmet to the race, but still managed to finish third wearing somebody’s Dad’s helmet.

Floody rocking the new blue Giant to a B grade win, pursued all the way by Lan.

Floody rocking the new blue Giant to a B grade win, pursued all the way by Lan.

In the Open race, debutants Brynley Abad on a hardtail 29er mountain bike (complete with Cannondale Lefty) and James Douglas, on a singlespeed, were too good for the rest of the field. Qld CX uber-fuehrer Brad Norman was in a solid third all race, only to get pipped in the sprint by HPRW roadie Mark McLennan.

The race calendar is improving all the time in Queensland.

Next Sunday, 1 June, sees Robbie McEwen hosting a CX race for the first time, at the Nerang Cycling Centre on the Gold Coast. Robbie spent many years observing cyclocross when he lived in Belgium, and has always been a fan but never had a chance to try it during his pro career. In retirement he can do what he likes, and it turns out he likes racing CX!

We’re hoping for a great turnout down at Nerang next Sunday. Check the Queensland Cyclocross page on Facebook for the latest details.

Also coming up soon will be the Queensland Cyclocross championships, to be held in Ipswich on Sunday 22 June, hosted by the Ipswich Cycling Club.

Chip off the old block. This is Ewen McEwen.

Chip off the old block. This is Ewen McEwen.

Chaos over the first barriers in A grade. Declan leads Josh and Robbie.

Chaos over the first barriers in A grade. Declan leads Robbie and Josh and  Karl.

Sunday 25th May – BSMC Nundah CX

U11 15min
1 Patrick Flood 4 Laps
2 Leroy Butler 4 Laps
3 Ciaran Casey 4 Laps
4 Aiden Taylor 4 Laps
5 Michael Murray 4 Laps
6 Marly Harrison 4 Laps
7 Bennett Boyd 3 Laps
8 Emily Blatchford 3 Laps (1st Female)
9 Kinan Leary 3 Laps
10 Spencer Mitchell 3 Laps
11 Aiden Leary 2 Laps
12 Lachlan Walters 2 Laps
13 Zander Holiday 2 Laps

Open 30min
1 Brynley Abad 7 Laps
2 James Douglas 7 Laps
3 Mark McLennan 7 Laps
4 Bradley Norman 7 Laps
5 Glenn McIntosh 7 Laps
6 Thomas Grey 7 Laps
7 Hugh Barbour 7 Laps
8 David Roest 7 Laps
9 Damien Muller 7 Laps
10 Anthony Green 7 Laps
11 Grant Dawson 7 Laps
12 Lyn Brider 7 Laps (1st Female)
13 Ewan McEwen 7 Laps
14 Hugh Gormley 7 Laps
15 Paul Leary 7 Laps
16 Andrew Wilson 6 Laps
17 Stephen Whitaker 6 Laps
18 Scott Kirton 6 Laps
19 Kim Bui 6 Laps
20 Oliver Nendick 6 Laps (2nd Female)
DNF Suzette Davis 3 Laps (3rd Female)

B Grade 30min
1 Darren Flood 8 Laps
2 Lan Bui 8 Laps
3 Richard Banaszczyk 8 Laps
4 Michael McMahon 8 Laps
5 Paul Woodward 8 Laps
6 Adam Harrison 8 Laps
7 Aaron Pickett-Heaps 8 Laps
8 Graeme Mitchem 8 Laps
9 Mark Routledge 8 Laps
10 Dean Winchester 8 Laps
11 Andrew Woodhouse 8 Laps
12 Brett Chaseling 8 Laps
13 Chistopher Lusty 8 Laps
14 Cameron Douglas-Savage 8 Laps
15 Matt Powel 8 Laps
16 Tim Hooker 8 Laps
17 Jason Banks 8 Laps
18 Simon Nendick 8 Laps
19 Jordan Heppell 8 Laps
20 Ash Ireland 8 Laps
21 Ben Blanch 8 Laps
22 Andrew Patten 8 Laps
23 Bennett Rust 7 Laps
24 Phil Jones 7 Laps
25 David Taylor 7 Laps
26 Andrew Demack 7 Laps
27 David Jacobs 6 Laps
DNF Sebastion Vejby 1 Lap
DNF Christopher Roberts 1 Lap

A Grade 45min
1 Robbie McEwen 14 Laps
2 Lawson Hartshorn 14 Laps
3 Karl Wilson 14 Laps
4 Jason Smith 14 Laps
5 Justin Claridge 14 Laps
6 Declan Kilkenny 14 Laps
7 Simon Frederiksen 14 Laps
8 Ian Blatchford 14 Laps
9 Shem Guthrie 14 Laps
10 David Whybrew 13 Laps
11 Simon Wilson 13 Laps
12 Warren Jennings 13 Laps
13 Anna Beck 13 Laps (1st Female)
14 Les Heap 13 Laps
15 Connie Silvestri 13 Laps (2nd Female)
16 Sharon Heap 13 Laps (3rd Female)
17 Yannik Frank 13 Laps
18 Joshua Watts 13 Laps
DNF Scott Smith 8 Laps
DNF Matt Williams 7 Laps
DNF Joshua Bosschiter 4 Laps
DNF Nathan Moore 3 Laps