Okay it’s been a busy week without much time to sit down at the computer and blog my life away. I’ve got a lot to catch up on. First on the list is the inaugural race for Encino Velodrome's 50th season — Black Line Fever.
The weather was perfect, not too hot and not too cold, which made for a great day at the velodrome. Race director and announcer Alfred Nash had a great program of events including Points Races, Match Sprints, Miss N Outs, Win N Outs and even a Slow Race. Alfred definitely knows how to put on a fun and exciting race event. You rock, dude!
Some of the fields were a little on the thin side with a lot of the usual suspects absent. There were only three racers in the Men’s Cat 1/2 and Cathy Keeley (Herbalife La Grange) pick up an easy victory being the only one entered in Women’s Cat 1/2 — she raced with with Masters 45+ field just to make it interesting. On the other hand, the Juniors fields were pretty full with young racers from Connie Cycling and Encino Velo duking it out. The Encino Velo kids took the most podium positions with that home court advantage.
One of Encino Velo’s most promising young talents, Daniel Kosykh handed in an awesome performance, tearing up the Men’s Cat 3/4 field. James Enright (Swami’s Cycling) took second place.
Another great ride came from Michael Weitze (Surf City Cyclery), who won each event of the Masters 45+ Omnium. Everyone else was just trying to hang on during his clean sweep performance.
No doubt the biggest impression was left by Project London rider Kevin Mansker who not only won the Men’s 1/2 Omnium — he also cracked Encino Velodrome’s Flying 200m TT record. Mansker stuck around until after the end of the races to set a new track record of 11.18 seconds. Now that’s fast! In fact the only ting Kevin wasn’t so great at was riding slow — he lost the Slow Race to Jack Lindquist (Ritte Racing).
I had tons of fun both racing and watching and I can’t wait for the next race in the Bob Hansing Memorial Cup at the end of the month. So without further ado, here’s a short video from Pat Benson followed by the podium results…
Youth 12 & Under
1. Weston Giem (unattached)
2. Jacob Horvet (Encino Velo)
3. Willianna De Leon (Encino Velo)
Juniors 13 - 16
1. Jordan Zhdanov (Encino Velo)
2. Edward Horvet (LACBC)
3. Lucas De Leon (Encino Velo)
Without a doubt Australia has proven that they have the strongest country in track cycling this year — earning eleven medals, eight of which are of the golden variety. The Aussies surely will be the ones to watch out for next year at the London Olympics.
Men’s Kilo TT Stefan Nimke laid down a Kilo in just over a minute. Considering how slow this track is, he needs to get his ass down to Bolivia and set a new World Record.
1 - Stefan Nimke (Germany)
2 - Teun Mulder (Netherlands)
3 - Francois Pervis (France)
Men’s Madison Cam Meyer and Leigh Howard — the Australian dream team — held it down and defended their title for another year.
1 - Australia (Leigh Howard, Cameron Meyer)
2 - Czech Republic (Martin Blaha, Jiri Hochmann)
3 - Netherlands (Theo Bos, Peter Schep)
Women’s Omnium Placing top 5 in five of the six events, Tara Whitten gets to keep her World Champ jersey for another year.
1 - Tara Whitten (Canada)
2 - Sarah Hammer (USA)
3 - Kirsten Wild (Netherlands)
Women’s Keirin Meares makes it a triple-crown affair after winning an awesome Keirin tourney. Three World Champ titles for her this year! Definitely the star of the show.
1 - Anna Meares (Australia)
2 - Olga Panarina (Belarus)
3 - Clara Sanchez (France)
With four more striped jerseys to hand out, tomorrow is the final day of the 2011 UCI World Championships and you can bet that we’ll see a climactic end to the past five days of racing, especially with the women’s Keirin in the mix. The Madison is always fun to watch too — despite being a little bit tough to follow. Tune in on a FREE LIVE FEED at Cycling Fans. I think coverage should start around 6:30am Pacific Time.
Men’s Kilo TT » Even though the Kilo is no longer an Olympic event (thanks UCI!), we still have some pretty powerful legs vying for the title of World Champion. I expect that Teun Mulder (Netherlands) should be able to defend his stripes but you can bet we’ll see some damn close times coming from the likes of Stefan Nimke (Germany) and Francois Pervis (France).
Men’s Madison » The Australian duo of Cameron Meyer and Leigh Howard are back to defend their World Champion stripes. If they perform as well as they did last year, I think they’ll have it clinched. But watch out for the deadly Dutch combo of Peter Schep and Theo Bos who will be running off the cheers of their home crowd.
Women’s Omnium » Kirstin Wild (France) is leading in the Omnium standings but there are still three more events to contest tomorrow — Individual Pursuit, Scratch Race and 500m TT. Tara Whitten (Canada) is trailing right behind Wild in points and I still think she’ll get back on top to defend her World Champ title.
Women’s Keirin » This will be a great tournament to watch and probably the highlight of tomorrow’s events. We’ve got some heavy contenders like the one and only Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain), Shuang Guo (China) and Kristina Vogel (Germany). Lithuania’s Simona Krupeckaite will be looking to defend her World Champion title but there’s just one problem — the new queen of sprints Anna Meares (Australia) who already outpowered Krupeckaite in the Match Sprints earlier today. Does Meares have what it takes to win the Keirin as well? I’m not sure but if she does it I will certainly be impressed. Get ready for some exciting Keirin races tomorrow.
A perfectly timed victory from Shane Perkins, robbing Chris Hoy of the World Champion glory in the exciting final round.
1 - Shane Perkins (Australia)
2 - Chris Hoy (Great Britain)
3 - Teun Mulder (Netherlands)
Anna Meares wins her first World Champion title in the Sprint with truly impressive form. The victory brought tears to her eyes at the podium.
1 - Anna Meares (Australia)
2 - Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania)
3 - Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain)
Michael Freiburg earns Australia’s third Gold medal of the day with a win in the Omnium Scratch race.
1 - Michael Freiberg (Australia)
2 - Shane Archbold (New Zealand)
3 - Gijs Van Hoecke (Belgium)
Women’s Scratch Race
Brilliant race tactics from Marianne Vos. She joined a late breakaway with a group of 5 or 6 and then left them all behind on the bell lap.
1 - Marianne Vos (Netherlands)
2 - Katherine Bates (Australia)
3 - Danielle King (Great Britain)
Awesome climax to the men’s Sprint tournament today as well as a breathtaking performance from Sarah Hammer in the Individual Performance. I’m ready for more track racing! Don’t forget, you can find FREE LIVE FEEDS over at Cycling Fans.
Men’s Keirin » Even though he didn’t get the sprint, Chris Hoy (Great Britain) truly is a force to be reckoned with in the Keirin. That’s why he’s the reigning World Champion. I see a lot of powerful legs on the starting list — i.e. Teun Mulder (Netherlands) and Shane Perkins (Australia) — but I think Hoy’s still got this one.
Women’s Match Sprint » The real question here is not who will win but who will lose to Anna Meares (Australia). She shouldn’t have much trouble taking care of current World Champ Vicky Pendleton (Great Britain) in the semi-final and then move on to face either Olga Panarina (Belarus) or Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) for the final. Even though Panarina had the fastest qualifying time (tied with Meares — now that would be a good match-up), I think Krupeckaite’s wealth of experience in this race will get her to the final with Meares. Should be a really exciting tournament!
Men’s Omnium » France’s boy wonder Bryan Coquard is on top after three events. There are still the Individual Pursuit, Scratch race and Kilo to be contested and it won’t be easy to hold off contenders like Shane Archbold (New Zealand) and Elia Viviani (Italy).
Women’s Scratch Race » Defending World Champion Pascale Jeuland (France) is scheduled for this race but I think she might hold something back to reserve strength for the Omnium. In any case, former Keirin champ Jennie Reed (USA) will probably take it with that powerful jump just waiting for the right moment to be unleashed. But watch out for Marianne Vos (Netherlands) and Giorgia Bronzini (Italy).
Women’s Omnium » Tara Whitten (Canada) is wearing the stripes right now and I don’t think she’s ready to give them up. Her main rival in the Omnium will probably be Sarah Hammer (USA). Tomorrow we’ll see the first three events: Flying Lap, Points Race and Elimination race.
Men’s Points Race
The pace was fast but still Avila Edwin Alcibiades from Colombia was able to take a lap on the field. Not even Cam Meyer could answer to that.
1 - Avila Edwin Alcibiades (Colombia)
2 - Cameron Meyer (Australia)
3 - Morgan Kneisky (France)
Women’s Individual Pursuit
Sarah Hammer played it smart and counted on her Omnium training for a final surge in the last couple of laps to take the win.
1 - Sarah Hammer (USA)
2 - Alison Shanks (New Zealand)
3 - Vilija Sereikaie (Lithuania)
Kenny beat Hoy in the semi-finals and then Bauge made Kenny look like a grandma pushing her walker to the Sunday matinee. Now that’s raw power.
1 - Gregory Bauge (France)
2 - Jason Kenny (Great Britain)
3 - Chris Hoy (Great Britain)
Pony Up IV (Boston, MA) » An alleycat race presented by the Boston Bicycle Messenger Association.
Red Hook Crit (Brooklyn, NY) » Crit-style street racing on track bikes. This event is awesome so if you’re in the area, check it out.
Save Japan Benefit Race (Los Angeles, CA) » TOLA and Stryker LA present an alleycat race and group ride followed by a screenprinting party at Fresh Pressed. All donations go to the Red Cross to aid those in need over in Japan.
San Dimas Stage Race (San Dimas, CA) » Three days of racing in beautiful Southern California (okay it might be a little wet but that’s just more fun).
Lots of great performances delivered today at Apeldoorn Velodrome. The early rounds of the men’s Match Sprint tournament were insane and I can’t wait to see how it unfolds tomorrow. If you want to catch the FREE LIVE STREAMS, CLICK HERE. Coverage starts at around 11am Pacific Time.
Men’s Points Race » Last year Cameron Meyer (Australia) lapped the field twice in to take the World Champion title. What a beast. I don’t think he’ll have any trouble repeating the performance. His biggest threat from the field will probably be Peter Schep (Netherlands) who will be eager to impress his home crowd.
Women’s Individual Pursuit » Sarah Hammer (USA) is the current wearer of the stripes and she also holds the World Record which was set at the Pan American Games last year. Looking at the starting list, I’m not sure there’s anyone who could hold a candle to that. I think Hammer’s got this on in the bag.
Men’s Match Sprints » Kevin Sireau (France) was knocked out of the sprint tournament in a huge upset today in the 1/8 finals. He couldn’t even make it back in the repechage round. So we’re left with an interesting semi-final. In side of the tournament, the fastest of the French — Mickael Bourgain and reigning World Champ Gregory Bauge. On the other side, the Brits — Sir Chris Hoy and Jason Kenny. Now this should be interesting! Will each country choose a man to go to the final or will the semi’s go fair-and-square? I’m predicting that Bauge and Hoy will face off in the final and if it comes to that, I’m not sure Hoy’s got what it takes.
Women’s Match Sprints » World Champion Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) might be the queen of the sprint but her rival Anna Meares (Australia) has made it clear that there’s a new lady in the house. Also watch out for Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) and Shuang Guo (China). Tomorrow we’ll see who makes it to the semi-final round.
Men’s Omnium » With current World Champ Ed Clancy (Great Britain) out sick, the Omnium is up for grabs. Tomorrow we’ll see the first three rounds of the Omnium: the Flying Lap, Points Race and Elimination Race. I predict that the main contenders for the stripes will be Zach Bell (Canada), Shane Archbold (New Zealand) and the youngster Sam Harrison (Great Britain).
Women’s Team Pursuit
I gotta say I did not see this coming. The British trio really shined today, clocking the best qualifying time and easily beating USA in the final.
1 - Great Britain (Laura Trott, Wendy Houvenaghel, Danielle King)
2 - United States (Sarah Hammer, Dotsie Bausch, Jennie Reed)
3 - New Zealand (Kaytee Boyd, Jaime Nielsen, Alison Shanks)
Women’s Team Sprint
Meares and McCulloch looked so calm and collected during the final round compared to the huffing and puffing British sprinters.
1 - Australia (Anna Meares, Kaarle McCulloch)
2 - Great Britain (Victoria Pendleton, Jessica Varnish)
3 - China (Shuang Guo, Jinjie Gong)
Men’s Individual Pursuit
Jack Bobridge wins with a time of 4:21 which just goes to show how different velodromes can yield different results.
1 - Jack Bobridge (Australia)
2 - Jesse Sergent (New Zealand)
3 - Michael Hepburn (Australia)
Complete results and times are available here and check the video highlights from UCI Channel.
The first day of competition at the World Championships was a good warm-up for what’s to come. Tomorrow’s schedule features events that have each had new World Records set within the past year. Will records fall again?
Women’s Team Pursuit » Australia are the reigning World Champions in this event but if anyone can tear that title away from them it’s Sarah Hammer and the USA team who set a new World Record in this event during the Pan American Games in Mexico last year.
Women’s Team Sprint » Australia’s Anna Meares and Kaarle McCulloch set a new World Record at last year’s World Championships. They are the undisputed queens of the Team Sprint and the real question isn’t whether or not they’ll keep their stripes but if they’ll set a new World Record tomorrow.
Men’s Individual Pursuit » Last year’s World Champ Taylor Phinney (USA) is too busy with his road career to play around on the track. You can thank the International Olympic Committee and UCI for removing the Individual Pursuit from the Olympics program but that doesn’t mean this event has come to a stand-still by any means. Jack Bobridge (Australia) made huge headlines last month when he smashed the ultimate IP World Record and broke Chris Boardman’s 1996 Superman position record. Can anyone top that?