Positive signs from young riders in Adelaide
New Zealand's teenage talent, including Waimate's Dylan Kennett, showed plenty of promise at the Oceania track cycling championships that finished in Adelaide yesterday.
While Australia dominated most of the silverware, there was plenty of young flair on display to encourage BikeNZ as it begins the cycle to the 2014 Commonwealth Games and 2016 Olympic Games.
Southland's Jeremy Presbury and Steph McKenzie impressed in the sprint events while in the endurance events Kennett, Alysha Keith (Dunedin), Georgia Williams (Auckland), Hayden McCormick (Te Awamutu), Cameron Karwowski (Invercargill) and Pieter Bulling (Invercargill) all showed up.
One of the most impressive was 19-year-old Bulling, who finished second in his first omnium, the gruelling event comprising six disciplines. Karwowski finished third in an event won by three-time world junior champion Luke Davison.
McCormick rode strongly behind Kennett as the Kiwis took all three major placings in the scratch race.
Presbury gained the silver medal in the under-19 keirin behind 16-year-old Australian Jay Castles, who got the jump on the field a lap out.
Presbury came from near the rear with a powerful burst to get within a whisker of the gold medal, but he was nonetheless pleased with the effort.
The 17-year-old from James Hargest College has only recently returned to the sport after a lengthy break, marking his comeback to finish fourth in the keirin at the world championships in Invercargill.
McKenzie, who won four medals at the junior world track championships, impressed to finish fourth in the elite women's sprint. She was pipped by brilliant world junior omnium champion Taylah Jennings in a tight series that went to a deciding race.
Rising star Keith produced an outstanding final four laps solo to nab maximum points and a silver medal place in the women's race won by Australian Ashlee Ankudinoff. Auckland's Georgia Williams was third.
The men's keirin riders, Sam Webster, Matt Archibald and Eddie Dawkins, all missed out on a place in the final.
The Timaru Herald