Waimate’s Dylan Kennett will defend his title in the men’s individual pursuit on the opening night of the Skoda Track Cycling National Championships at the Avantidrome in Cambridge.
The 20 year old set a significant personal best time of 4:21.254 to top qualifiers in the 4000m individual pursuit, nearly four seconds inside his previous best.
He will ride off against Canterbury’s Alex Frame in the gold medal ride tonight. Frame, 21, is a former national junior track representative, who has been riding on the road in Europe in recent times, last year part of Giant-Shimano’s development team. He clocked 4:23.66, while Commonwealth Games medallists Marc Ryan (Timaru) 4:23.920 and Pieter Bulling (Southland) 4:25.68 will ride off for the bronze medal.
Titleholder Jaime Nielsen dominated qualifying for the women’s 3000m individual pursuit, clocking 3:35.33, and will ride off against her Commonwealth Games teammate Rushlee Buchanan (3:37.25) in an all-Waikato final tonight.
Auckland’s Georgia Williams (3:37.51) takes on Mid South Canterbury’s Lauren Ellis (3:38.78) for the bronze, with Cycling New Zealand’s current team pursuit quartet all qualifying for the medal rides.
Former para snowboarder Byron Raubenheiumer (Auckland) took out the paracycling 1000m C1-C5 time trial in 1:12.25 while former para track star Kate Horan (Wellington), who won a silver medal at the paracycling world championships last year, took out the women’s 500m C1-C5 time trial in 39.80s.
Tonight’s session features the individual pursuit finals, the time trial finals over 500m for women and 1000m for men and men’s under-19 scratch race.
Competition at the Avantidrome begins at 10am daily until early afternoon with finals sessions from 7pm on Thursday and Friday, 6.30pm on Saturday and 4pm on Sunday.
Each day includes two sessions; day and evening. Tickets are available online now through www.tracknationals.co.nz Adults from $15 and children from $8.
U19 boys were supposed to have 2 heats for scratch race, but had a few scratchings. So going straight thru to final scratch race tonight.
3000m Individual pursuit. Kirstie James 3.53.6 (still very sick but still rode, has scratched from further racing at this stage)
4000m Individual pursuit. Nick Kergozou 4.29.3 (rode a p.b. about 8th overall), Liam Aitchison 4.33.6, Pieter Bulling 4.25.666 (rode a p.b. qualified for ride for 3rd and 4th tonight)
500m TT. Para Victoria Baldwin 58.47 (Close to a p.b. and looked very good)