Southland cyclist Matt Zenovich has returned to Invercargill from road cycling in Europe and is preparing for next month's 2016 Oceania Track Cycling Championships in Invercargill.
Europe was a whole new level of racing for Zenovich who had a mixed seven month season on the road.
"My season was much like a flower that grew, but didn't quite blossom. The level of racing is so high that it's a shock to the system. After a slow start things started to look like they were going to go well, but in mid-April I ended up in hospital after I was wiped out at close to 60km per hour.
The highlight of Zenovich's season was a placing in the Baltic Chain Tour.
"I competed in a race called the Baltic Chain Tour where I gained my first UCI points and a third place," he said.
Zenovich is looking forward to the Oceania Championships.
"I will enjoy the atmosphere and the fact I can race on the track again, with riders and against other competitors and friends that I haven't seen since I left New Zealand for my European season," he said.
Track racing is not the number one priority for the twenty-one-year-old who has been "taking it easy" since his return from Europe, and as a result he will only start in two events at the track championships.
"As an athlete you have to think long term. So my preparation is at this point easy rides and getting on the track once a week to familiarise myself with the bike as it is much different to a road bike. I will start in only the two longer events, the points and the scratch race. As far as I'm concerned the rest of the events are far too short," he said.
Zenovich is aiming for a good result in November's Tour of Southland, and hoping to use the Oceania Track Cycling Championships to bring back his leg speed.
Photo and article courtesy The Southland Stuff