Southland claims masters team sprint title
Teenagers Jenna Borthwick and Jack Carswell have ensured their week at the Vantage Age Group Track Championships was one to remember, picking up a further five national under 17 titles between them on the final day of competition in Cambridge.
Around 220 riders from around the country assembled at the Avantidrome to contest youth and masters age group titles over four days of competition, ending Sunday.
Canterbury 16-year-old Borthwick topped off an incredible competition by securing a further three titles on the final day, adding to the three won earlier in the week.
She and fellow Cantabrians Mikaela Grant, Charlotte Spurway and Amelia Sykes went into the Under-17 team pursuit final as underdogs, three and a half seconds slower in qualifying than the quartet from Southland.
In one of the races of the evening, Southland led the charge through the 1000m and 2000m marks, but the gritty Cantabrians produced a stunning final 1000m that saw them sneak past Southland by 0.75 seconds, an astonishing 7.4 seconds faster than their qualifying time.
Borthwick and Sykes then paired up in the team sprint, setting a new national record of 36.947s in qualifying, then going on to win gold in the evening session.
In her final outing of the competition, Borthwick was joined by Spurway in the Madison where the pairing worked in tandem to gain a lap on the field and secure maximum sprint points to blow away the competition.
“It was great to ride and race with my Canterbury teammates. I loved the team events, especially the Madison, and it’s been a really successful nationals for me,” said Borthwick.
Waikato-Bay of Plenty’s Jack Carswell also had a fantastic final day, picking up a new national record in the team sprint with Hamish Coltman and Zakk Patterson, before teaming up again with Patterson to take control in the under-17 Madison. The Waikato Bay of Plenty duo were in the mix for the entire 10km race, but took control at the halfway point by gaining a lap and going on to take maximum points in the final two sprints to hold off the Canterbury pairing.
In the under-15 grade, Seana Gray picked up gold in the points race, and teamed up with Mackenzie Barnett in the team sprint to make it a clean sweep of all under 15 girls events this week. It was an all Waikato Bay of Plenty affair in the under 15 boys grade as well with the pairing of Hamish Banks and Maui Morrison taking gold in the team sprint, before Banks went on to win the points race.
Carswell, Banks and Gray’s winning ways helped the Waikato Bay of Plenty Centre to top of the points standings, with the centre awarded the combined points shield for elite and age group track cycling.
Auckland’s Penny Pawson capped off a stellar week to be first across the line in the women’s masters points race, while Tim Carswell (Waikato BOP) put on a points race masterclass to cross the line first in the men’s masters category 2 race.
The masters team sprint titles were won by Southland pairing Geertien Venter and Erin Criglington, while the men’s race was won by Waikato Bay of Plenty’s Antony Brown, Manu Robson and Dan Rutland.