Teen sets track alight at cycling championships

Last updated 05:00 01/03/2013
Tom Sexton
TOUGH COMPETITOR: Tom Sexton, left, could not outsprint Campbell Stewart in the under-17 boys’ sprint semifinal at the Invercargill Velodrome last night.

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Campbell Stewart is a name you just might hear a lot more of down the track.

On day three of the New Zealand Age Group Track Cycling Championships, which are being held in Invercargill this week, Stewart gave those at the Invercargill Velodrome a glimpse of his talents.

The West Coast North Island rider won gold in the boys' under-17 sprint and it wasn't just the fact he won the gold that was impressive, it was how he went about it.

The teenager was too good for Southland's Tom Sexton in the semifinals before having little trouble in winning the final, beating Lewis Eccles of Waikato/BOP in two races.

Stewart backed up his win in the sprint by winning another gold later in the night in the under-17 5km scratch race which was just as impressive.

Good mates Hamish Beadle and Sexton squared off in the ride for bronze after they were beaten in the semifinal action by Stewart and Eccles.

It was Beadle who come up trumps winning the first two races in the three-race series.

Promising Southlander Kain Bowles added to the gold medal he won on the first night in the 500m time trial by winning the under-15 2km scratch race last night in thrilling fashion.

He pipped fellow Southlander Corbin Strong and Thomas Garbett on the West Coast North Island team.

Masters women's rider Erin Criglington was also back in the gold medal winners' circle after picking up gold medals on the first two days. She added to those with another in the 5km scratch race final.

It was a trifecta for Southland, with Jacqui Dearlove and Nicole Stevens picking up the silver and bronze.

Youngster Emma Cumming produced an outstanding race, and was aided by good work from her team-mates, as she picked up a bronze medal in the girls' under-17 scratch race.

It went with the silver medal she won on day one in the 500m individual pursuit.

Other Southlanders to win medals last night included masters men's riders Jerard Stock, Garry Smith and Brendon Akeroyd.

Stock and Smith won silver and bronze respectively in the masters (2) 2000m individual pursuit while Akeroyd won bronze in the men's masters (1) 3000m individual pursuit.

The championships continue today with qualifying races this morning, and finals tonight, including under-17 sprint and points races.

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- The Southland Times

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