The New Zealand elite and under-19 track cycling championships, being held in Invercargill, are the first step for this country's best track riders towards the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
The championships run through until Sunday.
Already the sweltering heat in Southland produced some fast times for the opening session of the BikeNZ National Track Cycling Championships in Invercargill today.
The heat was on in the elite men's 250m time trial final, with Auckland's Ethan Mitchell claiming back his own New Zealand record in a time of 17.325 ahead of Southland riders Matt Archibold with 17.578 and Eddie Dawkins with 17.917.
Otago's Katie Schofield also broke her own New Zealand record of 19.595 to secure a gold medal in the elite women's 250m time trial in a time of 19.326. Southlanders took the other places on the podium, with Stephanie McKenzie claiming silver in 19.730 and Natasha Hansen bronze in 20.211.
Sports editor Nathan Burdon and chief photographer Robyn Edie will be providing coverage of the champs throughout the weekend.
- The Southland Times