Fourth for Strong at junior track worlds
Southland rider Corbin Strong was edged out of a medal after an aggressive penultimate day of racing at the UCI Junior Track Cycling World Championships in Switzerland.
Strong, part of the gold medal-winning New Zealand team pursuit, finished fourth, only five points off a medal in the omnium competition at the UCI Velodrome in Aigle.
There was some fierce bunch racing with crashes in both the men’s omnium and women’s points race with New Zealand’s Annamarie Lipp unhurt after she was caught in a nasty crash that brought a temporary stop to the race.
Strong, the Oceania Omnium champion, went into the deciding Points race in a share of second place.
It proved a hard-fought encounter with none of the leading contenders able to make a telling break. The New Zealander rode prominently to collect two third-placings and one fourth in the sprints to be edged out of a spot on the podium by Australian Blake Quick, while Frenchman Donavan Grondin survived a warning for causing a crash to claim the gold.
Strong set himself up for the finale after placing eighth in the Scratch race, fourth in the Tempo and third in the Elimination, with only 14 points covering the top four riders.
Earlier Lipp was prominent without reward, finishing ninth in the Points race final. There were a number of falls with the Kiwi running in to the back of a fallen rider where nearly half the field brought down in a crash late in the race.
She recovered to push hard in the final sprint where Italy’s Silvia Zanardi, who crashed earlier, claimed the honours to secure the gold medal.
Southland’s Sophie-Leigh Bloxham (35.663s) and Nelson’s Shaane Fulton (35.842s) finished seventh and eighth respectively in the women’s 500m time trial, with both Kiwi riders qualifying in the top-eight for the final after winner Lea Friedrich (GER) set a new world record of 33.922s in qualifying.
Canterbury’s Sami Donnelly clocked 2:26.079 and Waikato’s McKenzie Milne 2:26.079 to finish ninth and 10th respectively in the 2000m individual pursuit.
Strong returns to the track on the final day to be paired with Christchurch’s Bailey O’Donnell in the men’s 30km Madison while Ally Wollaston links with Milne in the women’s version over 20kms, added to the junior world championship programme last year.
Fulton and Bloxham return to compete in the keirin while Jarred Treymane and Thomas Garbutt will take on the 1000m time trial.
Day 4 results:
Omnium, scratch race: Frederik Wandahl (DEN) 1, Donavan Grondin (FRA) 2, Blake Quick (AUS) 3. Also: Corbin Strong (NZL) 8. Tempo: Ricardo (RSA) 21 points, 1; Damian Papierski (POL) 8, 2; Quick 5, 3. Also: Strong 4, 4. Elimination: Papierski 1, Grondin 2, Strong 3. Points: Broxham (RSA) 28 points, 1; Wandahl 15, 2; Quick 14, 3. Also: Strong 5, 7. Overall: Grondin 115 points, 1; Wandahl 111, 2; Quick 106, 3; Strong 101, 4.
Women 500m time trial: Lea Friedrich (GER) 34.045, 1; Iana Tyshenki (RUS) 34.645, 2; Alessa-Catriona Propster (GER) 35.123, 3. Also: Sophie-Leigh Bloxham (NZL) 35.663, 7; Shaane Fulton 35.842, 8. Qualifying: Friedrich 33.922, 1 (World Record); Tyshenko 34.923, 2; Kseniia Andreeva (RUS) 35.413, 3. Also: Bloxham 35.743, 6; Fulton 35.896, 8.
2000m individual pursuit qualifying: Vittoria Guazzini (ITA) 2:22.134, 1; Daria Malkova (RUS) 2:22.293, 2; Marie le Net (FRA) 2:22.346, 3; Sophie Edwards (AUS) 2:22.577, 4. Also: Sami Donnelly 2:26.079, 9; McKenzie Milne 2:26.079, 10.
Women Points (10km): Silvia Zanardi (ITA) 1, Sarah Gigante (AUS) 2, Shari Bossuyt (BEL) 3. Also: Annamarie Lipp (NZL) 9.