Nine national titles were handed out on the opening night of the 2013 Age Group Track Cycling Championships in Invercargill this evening.
Southland’s Erin Criglington delivered another national title and another New Zealand record in winning the Masters 1 Women Time Trial. Her 37.889 smashed her former mark set at last year’s championships by over two-tenths of a second. Southland team mates Kylea Gough (39.620) and Cherie Champion (39.726) completed the southern trifecta – Champion earning a podium spot in her National Champs debut.
Meanwhile the Masters 2 Men were also in record-breaking form. Four riders went under the previous national record, headed by Canterbury’s Wayne Eyre (a former New Zealand Junior Worlds representative) whose 35.851 earned him a deserved gold medal and reportedly his first national title since winning gold in 1988. Garry Smith set the event alight with a blistering 36.221 in the opening heat which was only bettered by Eyre. Jerard Stock earned bronze with 36.283 with Roger Nicholas also bettering his former record time from 12 months ago.
Earlier, the West Coast North Island duo of Libby Arbuckle (41.305) and Emily Shearman won gold and silver respectively in the championship’s opening event, the Under 15 Girls Time Trial with Shaane Fulton of Tasman claimed bronze.
Southland’s Kain Bowles opened his campaign with gold in the Under 15 Boys time trial. His 36.771 saw him take the win by 0.4 seconds over Canterbury’s Josh Scott and Matthew Trenchard in third.
Jacqui Dearlove successfully defended her national title in the Masters 2 Women’s time trial, recording 40.159 to beat home club-mate Sam Kopae by a little over a second.
The Masters 3 Men Time Trial was again dominated by Russell Scott. The hard-charging Aucklander was over three seconds faster than his nearest rival, scorching home in 35.928 ahead of Graeme Blackwood who took silver in 39.042 and Wellington’s Steve Chapman 40.149 claimed bronze.
Southland’s Mike White claimed the Masters 1 Men 750 metre time trial finishing with 51.047 to beat Otago’s Sam Park in to the silver medal position by three quarters of a second with another debutant, Southland’s Brett Roulston earning a medal spot in third.
Olivia Podmore lived up to her favourite’s tag in claiming the Under 17 girls time trial title in 37.280, a second and a half ahead of Emma Cumming (Southland) who took silver in 38.706 and Michaela Drummond (West Coast North Island) earning bronze in 38.967.
Waikato-Bay of Plenty’s Lewis Eccles claimed the final gold of opening night in the Under 17 Boys Time Trial final, ripping around the velodrome twice in 34.643 to take the win over impressive first year Under 17 Campbell Stewart (West Coast North Island) and Canterbury’s Sam Buckner who claimed bronze.
Racing continues tomorrow from 10am with the start of the under 19 Omniums, Individual Pursuit qualifying for Masters Women and Under 17 boys and girls and Under 15 Girls Points race heats.
The Age Group championships continue through until Saturday.