27/02/2011 - The 2011 RaboDirect Elite National Track Cycling Champs ended in fine style at Invercargill's ILT Velodrome tonight with the host centre laying one hand on the Points Shield.
At the completition of three days of racing Southland has 48 Shield Points with its closest rival West Coast North Island on 23.
These two centres positions on the Points table are thanks in a large part to two riders. Natasha Hansen (Southland) and Simon van Velthooven (WCNI) have been totally dominant in the Womens and Mens sprint categories respectively and both earned trophies for earning the most points by invidual riders at this year's Elite Champs.
Hansen continued her breath-taking form by comfortably adding the Womens Keirin and 500m Time Trial titles to the Womens Sprint, and 250m Time Trial victories from the last two days.
van Velthooven proved equally effective in tonight's Mens Sprint, beating Southland's Matt Archibald two-straight in the final.
Auckland and Southland also engaged in a battle of the titans in the Mens Team Sprint. After only being seperated by 3 one-hundredths of a second in qualifying, Auckland finished strongly to claim bragging rights over their southern challengers with victory by 0.2 seconds.
The Mens and Womens Omniums were also decided. Tom Scully took out the Mens title after winning the Elimination Race and finishing second overall in the Points Race final. Cam Karwowski took out the silver while Jason Allen spolied the Southland trifecta, beating Lee Evans into third place by a solitary point.
Gemma Dudley sealed her Women's victory with wins in the Scratch Race Final and Omnium 500m Time Trial. Sequoia Cooper of Southland took silver while Rushlee Buchanan (waikato/BOP) grabbed third.
The RaboDirect Age-Group Champs begin on Tuesday at the ILT Veldrome with daily sessions atarting at 10am and 6.30pm.