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Scenes from the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium at Honeysuckle. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers Scenes from the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium at Honeysuckle. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers
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Scenes from the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium at Honeysuckle. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium winner Peter Milostic, of Sydney. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium winner Peter Milostic, of Sydney. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Australian cycling champion Robbie McEwen rides through a bend at Honeysuckle during the Division 1 race of the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium. Picture: Max mason-Hubers

Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium winner Peter Milostic, of Sydney, with son Lindon, 5. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Australian cycling champion Robbie McEwen. Picture: Max Mason Hubers

Scenes from the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium at Honeysuckle. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Australian cycling legend Robbie McEwen. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Organisers of Bikefest Newcastle were overwhelmed by the turnout at the weekend and were hoping for bigger and better things next year.

The inaugural festival was warmly received by Hunter residents as well as bike lovers from across the state and as far as the Gold Coast.

Co-ordinator Bernard Hockings said about 20,000 people came through on Saturday and Sunday.

The main attraction, the Mick Chapman Memorial Criterium, was also a huge success and attracted a high standard of competitors.

Craig Chapman, son of the late Hunter cycling personality, said the weekend ‘‘exceeded expectations’’ and was hopeful it would come back next year.

‘‘It depends a lot of funding and sponsorship but they all seemed pretty happy and I can see it growing,’’ he said.

‘‘It was awesome. I’d give it a nine out of ten.’’

Mr Chapman’s two sons Carsten, 15, and Kai, 13, won their respective divisions in the criterium while Peter Milostic, who was trained by Mick Chapman for 15 years, took out the main event.

Joe Lewis came second and Tour De France competitor Robbie McEwen finished third.

Mr Hockings said he was confident Bikefest Newcastle could turn into an annual event.

‘‘It’s really put us in a good position to make this annual, it was a lot bigger than I expected,’’ he said.

‘‘There was just a constant stream of people.’’

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