Date: Monday, 14 December 2015

Southland cycling officials are glowing following the 2015 Southland Track Championships as the province's next crop of cycling stars continue to emerge.

The Southland Championships was held over three sessions at the weekend, the first on Friday night.

Saturday's session run from 10am to 6pm, while on Sunday another packed day of racing was held as they squeezed in the 98 events and the 150 riders in total who attended.

Many of Southland's promising young riders simply rubber-stamped their status as cyclists with big futures. The most impressive aspect was number of quality young riders on display at the SIT Velodrome.

There was a host of standout performers at the event and they were headlined by Emma Cumming in the under-19 age-group, Bradly Knipe in the under-19 age-group and under-17 rider Corbin Strong.

Cycling Southland official Melissa Chilton said the organisation was in a strong position at the moment in regard to promising riders coming through.

"They are just owning the track. Brad Knipe is inspirational to watch, he is at another level. He's doing 10.6sec sprints and that is New Zealand sprinter stuff," she said.

"Again we are very much what they aiming to make us officially, which is a development hub."

"The sheer numbers with 20 under-17 girls, 15 under-17 boys, under-15 and under-13 fields all coming through strongly. It is very exciting for the future of Southland track cycling and future New Zealand representation when you've got the Brad Knipe's and Emma Cumming's sticking their hands up like they are."

As well as the age-groups riders there were also some impressive performances from various senior riders on the track at the weekend, including world champion masters cycling Erin Criglington.

The likes of Brendon Akeroyd, Mike White and Brett Roulston also had good Southland Championships.

The next big event at the SIT Velodrome is the New Year Carnival on January 22 and 23.

Article and photos courtesy Stuff

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