A significant increase in numbers has sparked a successful National Track Cycling Series which wrapped up in Cambridge.
Over 100 riders competed in the third round of the series at the Avantidrome, following rounds in Invercargill in June and Cambridge in July.
The series began last year, established to provide a platform for young riders to develop tactical and technical awareness on the track, and access relevant and practicable educational, coaching and tactical/technical workshops.
Over 140 athletes competed across the 2019 series, a 50 percent increase in numbers on 2018, with around a third competing in all three rounds.
The series has provided an important learning and training ground for members of the Subway National Performance Hub programme, and for young riders looking to make their way into the development programme in the future.
A highlight is the number of female riders, with large fields in the sprint and endurance racing accounting for nearly half of all riders competing, as well as a significant swell in entries for all sprint events.
Grassroots Trust Waikato BOP Hub coach Tim Carswell said it was pleasing to see so many riders step up and grow as a result of series.
“The National Track Series has already had a great impact on developing the technical and tactical ability of young riders, with the proof in our Junior World Championship results this year,” said Carswell.
“With so many young riders taking advantage of what this series has to offer, I am sure we will stay at the forefront of junior international racing over the coming years as well.”
The Upper South Hub pairing of Jenna Borthwick and Charlotte Spurway were jointly awarded the women’s ‘Living the Values’ Award, chosen by Vantage Elite rider Rushlee Buchanan. The men’s award went to Dylan Day for making the most of the educational workshops and putting his learning into practice during the weekend’s racing.
Despite taking a tumble on opening night that ruled her out of the weekend’s racing, junior individual pursuit world champion Ally Wollaston (Grassroots Trust Waikato BOP Hub) had accumulated enough points over the first two rounds to take out the women’s endurance A grade.
In the men’s version, Jack Carswell (Grassroots Trust Waikato BOP Hub) took out round three and the overall honours, staking his claim as one to watch for the New Zealand junior team at the upcoming Oceania Track Championships in Invercargill.
Auckland’s Bee Townsend and SIT Southern Hub’s Jacob Willis took out the endurance B grades.
In the sprint classification, Oceania bound Tyla Green (SIT Southern Hub) grabbed second place behind Shaane Fulton (Grassroots Trust Waikato BOP Hub) in the final round to take out the series sprint title, while round winner Patrick Clancy (Grassroots Trust Waikato BOP Hub) had to share the series title with Nelson’s Kaio Lart (Upper South Hub).
Attention for the majority of riders from the series will now turn to the Oceania Track Championships at the SIT Zero Fees Velodrome at Invercargill on 16-19 October 2019.