Date: Sunday, 21 April 2024


Benson Boys is only 14.

His first shot at riding in the under-17 ranks at the Age Group Road Nationals during the weekend could well have been viewed as a learning experience at that level - given his age.

Although it wasn’t simply a case of visiting to Cambridge to learn at the weekend. The Central Southland College Year 10 pupil finished second in an impressive ride that landed him with a silver medal and captured further attention as a Southland cyclist on the rise.

Cycling Southland programme and development manager Marc Prutton said Boys was “newish” to road cycling and it was great to see him produce a ride like he did on Saturday.

“He has been working pretty hard for the last few months, so it is cool to see how well he did,” Prutton said.

“He had a plan and he stuck to it and rode it well. A guy snuck away with about a kilometre to go, and he just held on. Benson was coming home at him, but he ran out of road essentially.”

Prutton said Boys - son of Southland rugby centurion Tim Boys - rode to his strengths.

“He’s got a fast finish, so he wanted to make sure he was at the finish with all the front guys. He rode it tactically really well.”

Boys’ silver went with a handful of other Cycling Southland medals in a successful trip to Cambridge.

On Friday Tom Sexton won gold in the open men’s time trial and Finella Guttman claimed bronze in the U19 women time trial.

On Saturday - on top of Boys’ silver medal - Hayden Strong won gold with a big ride in the open men’s road race.

Poppy McIvor also picked up a third-place finish in the U17 women’s road race.

  • An earlier version of this story said Benson Boys is 15. He is in fact 14.

Logan Savory 


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