Author Topic: The 2018 Robert Henry Harris Anzac Trophy  (Read 516 times)

MarkW

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The 2018 Robert Henry Harris Anzac Trophy
« on: April 23, 2018, 11:14:09 AM »
ANZAC TROPHY RACE –
The Bathurst Anzac Day memorial Trophy Race continues to be one of the most popular races on the Bathurst Cycling Club Calendar attracting excellent fields since its inception in 1995. Often referred to as the Flatlands Classic the short fast handicap event was introduced by BCC President Terry Dunphy as a race where every rider in the club had a chance of winning the trophy while also remembering the local cyclist that fought for our country in World War 1.

Paying Respect
For the 20th Running of the Anzac Day Trophy Race in 2014 the Club was keen to stop and reflect further on the impact World War 1 had on our Bathurst Cycling community. Consequently, a system was introduced of remembering a cyclist from the Bathurst Region in the name of the race who answered the calls of the nation to defend the freedom of their country.   

The 20th Anzac Trophy would be called the Jack Windsor Anzac Day Race a century after the young Bathurst champ won the 1914 Hastler Trophy and then enlisted in the 58th Battalion (badly injured Battle of Bullecourt)

Honoured in 2015, R.G.Honeyman was the Bathurst Club Champion and member of the amazing 7th Light Horse Regiment in Egypt and was later Killed on prisoner escort duties.
 
In 2016 E Johnson was a prize winner in the legendary Bathurst to Sunny Corner & Return Road race before joining 54th Battalion then the ANZAC Salvage Corps in France.

Bright young local Evans Plains Cycling prospect, little Jack McKay was honoured in 2017, he was one of 3 brothers who enlisted for WW1. His luck run out in September 1917 when he was Killed in Action in the 54th Battalion   
on the Western Front.

In 2018 we remember Robert Henry Harris…………..

RESULTS (since 2014)
2014 The Jack Windsor Anzac Day Race
1.Ayden Toovey 2.Harry Carter 3 BlairWindsor

2015 The R.G.Honeyman Anzac Day Race
1.Eliza Bennett 2.Robyn Partridge 3.Peter Rogers

2016 The E.Johnson Anzac Trophy Race
1.Scott Allen 2.Kalinda Robinson 3.Brooke Tuynman

2017 The little John McKay Anzac Trophy Race
1.Harry Carter 2.Billy Hutton 3.Mark Windsor

2018 R.H. Harris Anzac Trophy Race
1.Tom Bolton 2.Craig Hutton 3.Josh Corcoran

Previous Winners - 1995 Robert Stephen, 1996 Gordon Kemp, 1997 Christopher Johnson, 1998 Toireasa Ryan, 1999 Chris Stephens, 2000 Mark Renshaw, 2001 Drew Carter, 2002 Gerry Steida, 2003 Drew Carter, 2004 Drew Carter, 2005 Shane Smith, 2006 A Grade Andrew Carter B Grade Darryl Thorncraft, 2007 Brooke Parker 2008 Toireasa Gallagher, 2009 Darryl Thorncraft, 2010 A Grade – Daniel Stibbard B Grade – Brad Roughley, 2011 A Grade - Luke Cutler B Grade 1 Hollee Simons, 2012 Steve Buckley, 2013 Andrew Smith

FASTEST MALE, FEMALE WINNER: (since 2014)
2014 The Jack Windsor Anzac Day Race
Fastest Time - Ayden Toovey, Leading Female - Kirsten Howard

2015 The R.G.Honeyman Anzac Day Race
Fastest Time - Steve Bennett, Leading Female - Eliza Bennett

2016 The E.Johnson Anzac Trophy Race
Fastest Time - Dean Windsor, Leading Female - Kalinda Robinson

2017 The little John McKay Anzac Trophy Race
Fastest Time - Josh Corcoran First Female – Hollee Simons

2018 R.H. Harris Anzac Trophy Race
Fastest Time - Tom Bolton First Female - Kirsten Howard
« Last Edit: April 25, 2018, 09:31:40 AM by MarkW »

MarkW

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Re: The 2018 Robert Henry Harris Anzac Trophy
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2018, 11:21:18 AM »
2018 "R.H.Harris" Anzac Trophy
In 2018 the BathurstCC will honor OConnell Cyclist & WW1 Veteran Robert Henry Harris

2018 Robert Henry Harris, O’Connell. (1889-1965).
55th Battalion – World War 1

Prior to World War 1 there was a number of Cycling Clubs in the Bathurst Region, including a successful club at O’Connell which the Harris Family where major contributors. World War 1 would severely impact the family with siblings Cecil, Jack and Robert Henry Harris all enlisting for battle.

In 2018 the Bathurst Cycling Community honors Robert Henry Harris at the Anzac Trophy Race. The O’Connell cyclist served in the 55th Battalion (14th Brigade of the 5th Australian Division) at the infamous Fromelles, which although he was seriously wounded, he amazingly survived only to re-join his battalion at Polygon Wood and then around Villers Brettoneux area which will be recognised this year in France with a very high profile 100 year Anniversary.

In 2018 the Bathurst Cycling Community will pause to remember, and thank another member of our local cycling family for his brave action in World War 1 in the 2018 "Robert Henry Harris" Anzac Trophy.

Race Link -
https://www.webscorer.com/register?raceid=133267


MarkW

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Re: The 2018 Robert Henry Harris Anzac Trophy
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2018, 02:47:13 AM »
The Following has been provided by Robert Harris’s Grandson current Bathurst Club Member and Representative at last years Albi Worlds, Peter Wilson.

Robert Henry Harris born O’Connell (1889-1965)
Robert Henry Harris was born with a club foot in 1889 and was one of five children raised on the family farm just south of O’Connell. He was one of five children all of whom went to the local school. They learnt farming skills and when they were teenagers and became wool classers and shearers. Travel up until that time had been by foot or pony but in the mid 1890s, the Freedom machine, ‘the Roadster’ with one gear and pneumatic tyres became available, affordable and popular.
 
O’Connell at that time was where the main road from Sydney, Cox’s Rd, crossed the Fish River and as such was a substantial settlement. It was the only entrance into Bathurst. The town had a cycle club which hosted weekly road race events, large invitational challenges as well as regular velodrome races on a cinder track on the Mutton Falls Rd.
 
Robert Harris and his young brother Jack were two of the outstanding riders in the district and shared the club honours in 1909. After that time they were often away shearing (travelling on their bikes to the western sheep stations) and didn’t feature after that.
 
In 1915 the Coo-ee march went through Bathurst enroute to Sydney and three of the Harris brothers went in to enlist, seeking the adventure and glory as promised in all the hype. Cecil and Jack Harris were readily enlisted but Robert was rejected because of his club foot. He was very upset and within three months was back at the recruitment officer’s door to try again. He was again rejected.
 
So determined was he to join his brothers, he waited six months and went to Lithgow and enlisted there without disclosing he had a foot problem.
 
After initial training in Sydney at Victoria Barracks, he landed in Cairo in early 1916 and the 55 th Battalion was raised which consisted half Gallipoli veterans(which ended in December 1915 during which his young brother Jack was killed) and the other half, fresh recruits of whom Robert was one. The 55th Battalion was predominantly men from NSW which became part of the 14th Brigade of the 5th Australian Division.
 
Arriving in Marseille in June 1916 then by train to Amiens, the battalion entered the frontline trenches for the first time on July 12 at its first major battle at Fromelles a week later. 5533 Australian soldiers were lost in that disastrous battle in which Robert was shot in the stomach and evacuated to Calais and spent nine months recuperating from his wound.
 
He re-joined his unit in March 1917 and was sent to sniping school. Later that year the Australian Infantry Forces operations switched to Ypres in Belgium. The 55th’s major battle here was at Polygon Wood on Sept 26. Robert was shot again, this time in the leg but re-joined his unit in October.
 
A major German offensive was expected in early 1918 on the Western Front which came in March. Acting under the new commander, Major John Monash, the 14th Brigade took up positions around Villers Brettoneux and held these even after the village fell, threatening their flanks.
 
The Allied tactics and persistence paid off and they launched their own offensive in August 1918, capturing Peronne. Robert was shot in the jaw this time and evacuated to England due to the severity of the injury. He later underwent plastic surgery in Birmingham. His battalion fought the last major battle of the war, the Battle of Mont St Quentin Canal between 29 Sept-2 Oct 1918.
 
His battalion was resting out of the line when the Armistice was declared on November 11, 1918 although Robert was still in hospital until he returned to Australia in February of 1919. On the voyage back, he contracted the Spanish Flu and was disembarked in Egypt and left for dead in a hospital in Alexandria. He survived and five months later, discharged fron the AIF and back in Bathurst. His family thought he was ‘missing in action, presumed dead’ since their many
letters had received no response.
 
He was given a hero’s welcome on his return to O’Connell. Four months later he married his childhood sweetheart Linda Purdon, also from O’Connell. They had six children, the second oldest of whom was my mother.
 
Robert went on to re-train on the railways and for several years worked as Ben Chifley’s fireman. He became an engineman and retired in 1955. He was a great bushman, storyteller, vegetable gardener, beekeeper-he never said one word about the war.
 
He managed to get all the excitement and adventure that was promised-plus whole lot more! He was one of the lucky ones!

MarkW

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Re: The 2018 Robert Henry Harris Anzac Trophy
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2018, 06:29:34 AM »
Oliver Real Foods team rider Tom Bolton defeats the GMP boys in 2018 R.H.Harris Anzac Trophy:

The Backmarkers started hard and soon caught the entire field to set up a bunch sprint to the finish of the 2018 R.H.Harris Anzac Trophy. Oliver Foods rider Tom Bolton kicked first and held on to defeat the fast finishing Craig Hutton and his GPM Stulz team mate Josh Corcoran in 3rd place. Strong sprinter Julian Wood 4th and the inform Stephen Dunstall was 5th. The top female in the 2018 R.H.Harris Anzac Trophy Race was Kirsten Howard with a very impressive 6th place overall. Newcomers to cycle racing Will Lesh and Tony Shaw again put in eye catching rides to finish in the top 10 coming 7th and 10th with Damien Bennett 8th and David Reece 9th.

As in the past there was a quality field of female riders in the event with Kirsten Howard defeating Jette McKellar and Gemma Carter. Rosemary Hastings and Eliza Bennett knocking Cathy Adams and Robyn Partridge out of the top 5 in the women's classification.

RESULTS – 2018 R.H.Harris Anzac Trophy
1Tom Bolton 2Craig Hutton 3Josh Corcoran 4Julian Wood 5Steve Dunstall 6Kirsten Howard 7Will Lesh 8Damien Bennett 9David Reece 10Tony Shaw
Fastest Time - Tom Bolton
First Female - Kirsten Howard
« Last Edit: April 25, 2018, 09:18:26 AM by MarkW »