26/02/2011 - Christchurch’s Jason Allen, with 11 national titles to his name, finally ticked off the big one when he won the individual pursuit at the RaboDirect New Zealand track championships in Invercargill tonight.
But his victory in a handy 4:27.732 over talented Southland-based Marlborough rider Cameron Karwowski had a hollow ring to it.
While Allen’s home in Christchurch came through unscathed, he will head home tomorrow to help his brother who has his home badly damaged after the earthquake.
“It’s good to be out of Christchurch right now, but on the other hand it’s playing on my mind because my brother’s house is buried in sand,” Allen said. “I’ve been waiting a long time to finally win the individual pursuit at the national championships. But at this time cycling is pretty inconsequential.”
Allen, who stands 196cm, was a prominent track rider who competed in the team pursuit at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and was in the World Cup winning combination he previous year. He then turned his attentions to the road and is now a key member of the Subway Pro cycling team.
“In fact I rode the Rev 120 in the Waikato last weekend and got home and thought I better get the track bike out. I’ve not ridden the track in a long, long time. So it’s great to win this and in a pretty good time.”
Allen has been a regular at national championships for many years.
“I started as a novice. I remember going out and unclipping from my pedals, falling over and wiping out most of the West Coast North island team that had people like Gary Anderson riding.”
Allen made it a double celebration when he also won the scratch race from Southlanders Lee Evans and Tom Scully.
Meanwhile Simon van Velthooven, who won the 1000m time trial last night, easily won the keirin final as he prepares for next month’s world championships.
Earlier Natasha Hansen (Southland) defended her title in the women’s sprints, when she disposed of talented junior Henrietta Mitchell (Auckland) in two straight rides in the final.
Hansen, who made her World Cup debut in Beijing last month, was top qualifier. Mitchell set a new national record in her run that lasted for just three minutes until Hansen, the Canterbury rider now based in Invercargill, went faster in a time of 11.641.
Karwowski, a member of the junior world champion team sprint in 2009, topped qualifiers in the individual pursuit before Allen edged him in the final, while Scully was third.
Gemma Dudley (Levin) leads the women’s omnium after winning the flying lap from Southland’s Sequoia Cooper and fellow BikeNZ teammate Rushlee Buchanan.
Buchanan was all class in winning the women’s points race after putting three laps on the field. In an impressive performance the Te Awamutu rider took an early lap, efore joining with Cooper for a second lap. Not content, Buchanan was all aggressive in going solo to lap the field for a third time to win easily.
The championships conclude tomorrow with the national age and masters championships starting on Tuesday.
Women's Sprint qualifying: Natasha Hansen (Southland) 11.641, 1 (NZ record; Henrietta Mitchell (Auckland) 11.672, 2; Vanessa Quinn (Auckland) 12.364, 3. Quarter final: Scholfield bt Gibb; Quinn bt O’Donnell. Fifth-sixth: O’Donnell bt Gibb. Semifinal: Hansen bt Quinn 2-0, Mitchell bt Scholfield 2-0. Third-fourth: Scholfield bt Quinn 2-0. Final: Hansen bt Mitchell 2-0.
Women's Para-cycling 3000m Individual Pursuit qualifying: Fiona Southorn (C5) (Northland) 4.04.823. Jayne Parsons & Annaliisa Farrell (Tandem) (Waikato Bay of Plenty) 3.50.745. Final: Southorn 4:03.713, silver; Parsons and Farrell 3:50.712, silver.
Men's Para-cycling 3000m Individual Pursuit qualifying: Stephen Hills (C2) (WCNI) 4.20.386, Nathan Smith (C3) (WCNI) 3.54.223. Final Smith 3.52.042, gold; Hills 4.15.986, bronze.
Men's Para-Cycling 4000m Individual Pursuit qualifying: Jamie Kidd (C4) (Tasman) 5.28.550, Chris Ross (C5) (Otago) 5.13.396. Ross 5.10.212, bonze; Kidd 5.22.952
Men’s Keirin, semifinal 1: Simon van Velthooven (Manawatu) 1, Elijah May (Canterbury) 2, Karl Watson (Southland) 3. Semifinal 2: Matt Archibald (Southland) 1, Matt Dodds (Southland) 2, Bradley Tuhi (Canterbury) 3. Final: Van Velthooven 1, May 2, Archibald 3.
Men’s 4000m Individual Pursuit qualifying: Cameron Karwowski (Southland) 4.29.464, 1; Jason Allen (Tasman) 4.32.016, 2; Tom Scully (Southland) 4.35.303, 3; Brad Evans (Otago) 4.39.016, 4. Final: Allen 4:27.732, 1; Karwowski 4:29.880, 2; Scully walkover, 3.
Women's Flying lap: Gemma Dudley (WNCI) 15.104, 1; Sequoia Cooper (Southland) 15.261, 2; Rushlee Buchanan (WBOP) 15.690, 3.
Women's Elimination (omnium) Dudley, 1; Cooper, 2; Steele, 3.
Women’s 20km Points Race: Rushlee Buchanan (WBOP) 69 points, 1; Sequoia Cooper (Southland) 31, 2; Kathryn Jones (Otago) 22; 3.
Men’s 15km Scratch race: Jason Allen (Tasman) 1; Lee Evans (Southland) 2; Tom Scully (Southland) 3