UK Schools Games 2009
Track Racing made its debut as a sport in this year's UK Schools Games. We sent Richard Robotham along to watch the second day. His report is below. The third and final day saw the Inter-Regional Championship come down to the very last ride. With Wales requiring a win in the Boys Team Pursuit final to take the title they duly delivered edging out West Midlands by the narrowest margin.
Full results can be found on the Games' Website
Final Standings (top 3)
1 Wales 61
2 West Midlands 61
3 North West 64
Day 2 Report
2009 saw the introduction of Cycling to the UK Schools Games, the Games also include Athletics, Badminton, Gymnastics, Swimming, and other events spread over several venues in the south Wales area. Each event is run as near to international standard as is practically possible. On the second day of racing from the Newport Velodrome, the Welsh team were leading the Inter Regional Championship with 18 points. The day's racing started with the Keirin heats for both Boys and Girls.
Keirin - Girls
Harriet Owen (Central) won the Gold medal in the Keirin Final after progressing convincingly through the early morning heats and Semi Finals. Emily Kay (West Midlands) won the Silver medal in her first medal of the day.
Gold Harriet Owen Central
Silver Emily Kay West Midlands
Bronze Jessica Crampton North West
Keirin - Boys
Central rider John Paul used the derny to gain maximum advantage in the heats and the semi finals to secure his place and the Gold Medal in the Final. Tom Baker (West Midlands) who had beaten John Paul in the Semi Finals won Silver and James Berryman took the bronze.
Gold John Paul Central
Silver Tom Baker West Midlands
Bronze James Berryman North West
Pursuits - Qualifying
Wearing her National Championship Jersey, Emily Kay (West Midlands) posted the fastest qualifying time of 2.40.550 of the Girls 2000m Pursuit to secure her place in the final. Rob Lambton (West Midlands) secured his place in the final with an awesome ride, in a time of 2.18.170.
Although Emily Kay had already ridden through the Keirin heats to the finals, she started strong and fast against her opponent Amy Roberts (Wales) building up a half lap lead. Amy Roberts pulled back a few metres as Emily Kay tired but Emily held on to take the Gold medal in a time of 2.39.825. In the ride off for the Bronze medal Melissa Bury (North West) failed to take advantage following her early lead, which allowed Sarah King to creep ahead and take the Bronze Medal in a time of 2.46.050
Gold Emily Kay (West Midlands) 2.39.825
Silver Amy Roberts (Wales) 2.42.686
Bronze Sarah King (East Midlands) 2.46.050
Rob Lambton (West Midlands) was pushed to the limit by Jonathan Dibben (South) in the Boys 2000m Pursuit final. Jonathan Dibben led for most of the race but tired in the latter stages. The only encouragement Rob Lambton needed to increase his pace was the sound of the bell for the last lap. Calling on every ounce of strength, Lambton rode the lap of his life to take Gold by one second from Dibben in a time of 2.18.323. Dibben's time 2.19.812. Bronze was won by Owain Doull (Wales) in a neck and neck race against Oliver Rossi.
Gold Rob Lambton West Midlands 2.18.323
Silver Jonathan Dibben South 2.19.812
Bronze Owain Doull Wales 2.24.838
Time Trials - Girls
The afternoon session started with the 500m Time Trials; Sarah Crowley (Wales) won the Gold medal with a time of 39.216 in the last heat. Jessica Crampton (North West) held on to Silver with her first heat time of 39.450. Melissa Bury (North West) secured herself the Bronze medal after missing out in the Pursuit Final earlier.
Gold Sarah Crowley (Wales) 39.216
Silver Jessica Crampton (North West) 39.450
Bronze Melissa Bury (North West) 40.641
Time Trials - Boys
There was no question that the National Champion John Paul (Central) was on top form for the last heat of the Time Trial. James Berryman had earlier set the fastest time of 34.657 and it was proving hard to beat. John Paul awesome ride left everyone in his wake with a record breaking time of 33.818. James Berryman clung on to second place with his fast time and Rob Lambton secured another medal by clinching bronze with his time of 34.768.
Gold John Paul (Central) 33.818
Silver James Berryman (North West) 34.657
Bronze Rob Lambton (West Midlands) 34.768
Madison - Girls
The penultimate event of day two was the Girls Madison. Eight teams took to the boards in the Girls race, and they didn't take any prisoners. The Girls didn't hang about in this race the pace was fast and furious from the start with four of the teams gaining a lap in the early stages of the race. With great determination the Central girls team of Natalie Hill and Harriet Owen, led throughout the race and took maximum points in all four of the sprints.
The North West team of Jess Anderson and Melissa Bury kept the Central Team girls in there sights but were unable to get past them in the sprint laps. The high standard of racing from the girls meant that in the second half of the race the leading teams managed to gain another lap. Even though the Central Team had secured Gold with their third sprint win they didn't give up and continued at full speed at the head of the race denying any of the other teams the opportunity of the 5 points. With only one point separating the North West Team from the Welsh Team after the third sprint the Welsh girls of Amy Hill and Amy Roberts upped their pace in the last few laps of the race, they couldn't quite catch the Central girls but did beat the North West Team to second place and the three available points.
Gold Central 20 points 2 laps
Silver North West 9 points 2 laps
Bronze Wales 8 points 2 laps
Madison - Boys
The Boys Madison was the last event of the day, with each of the 12 regions fielding a team. With 80 laps on the board the attacks came fast and furious, with each team trying to gain a vital lap, each attempt was stopped in its tracks. The Welsh Team of Owain Doull and Matthew Haase were determined to win this event and won the first two sprints. However the Welsh Team didn't score any points in the third sprint, which was won by the Eastern Team of Thomas Gallacher and Oliver Rossi. With only one point between them and the East Midlands Team of Sam Lowe, the last sprint would be the decider.
The Eastern Team kept the pressure up at the head of the race, and were joined by the East Midlands Team and the Welsh Team. Each team took a turn at the front and with two laps to go Eastern made their final change and Oliver Rossi put his foot on the gas and threaded his way through the lagging Teams hotly pursued by Sam Lowe of East Midlands. The East Midlands Team could not catch the Eastern Team down the finish straight the Eastern team duo took the five points and the Gold Medal.
Gold Eastern 12 points
Silver Wales 11 points
Bronze East Midlands 9 points