Posted by Editoress on 02/23/12
For the 12th time this winter, a packed infield had the officials on their toes to keep the 2012 Clif Bar Youth Championships at the Forest City Velodrome in London, Ontario, running smoothly and on time. Forty five Under 19 racers were on hand to compete in four categories for the youth championships and Junior Pan Am Trials.
You could cut the tension with a knife on Saturday afternoon; the racers were preparing to do battle in fun and competitive environment to see who was going to go home with the very prestigious medals for reaching the podium.
The Competition was a three event Omnium (2 x 500m) and a Flying Lap. The riders were split into four Categories: Under 13, Under 15, Under 17 Girls and Under 17 Boys.
How the racing unfolded:
Under 13 Clif Bar Youth Championship
In the first of the three events for the youngest racers, Nathan Andreola (Woodstock) finished second to David Perez (London) in the opening event (Standing 500m TT), however, over the remaining two events Andreola (9 years old) came home with the quickest flying lap (11.35) and fastest 500m of the meet (49.72) in his age group. Rounding out the podium were Ian Doell (Toronto), Julia Tiba (London) and Griffin Lytle (Buffalo). It was neat to see nine young racers coming to the FCV and having a great time competing in this Youth Championship.
Under 15 Clif Bar Youth Championship
Six very competive young men took to the starting line to contest their three event Omnium. The racing was very competitive in this category, with a tie breaker needed to determine the eventual winner. In event #1, Lucas Taylor (London) managed to come out on top of the event with a 0.01 second advantage over Fonz Vandenbroek (Springfield), who had to settle for second. Spencer Virtue (Windsor) held on to third position after one event.
In the flying lap, Taylor, the local London speedster, was the only rider to break the 10 second barrier. Taylor went 9.92, with Vandenbroek at 10.13 and Virtue clocking 10.39. This category would come down to the third event to determine the overall champion. The 500m TT was an event Lucas Taylor would like to forget, as he skipped his front wheel in the opening 30m and could not make a comeback in the later half of the race and had to settle for third (43.71) to Vandenbroek's winning time of 43.31. Virtue had a solid ride (43.63) to nail down third overall.
The tie-breaker was the total time for all three events and the late slip by Taylor handed the overall win to Fonz Vandenbroek by less than 0.23 seconds; a very competitive division. Rounding out the podium in fourth position was Logan McIntyre (Teeterville) and Sam Carson (London) in fifth.
Under 17 Girls Clif Bar Youth Championship
Five young ladies came to the roll around in this very competitive category. The ages of the girls ranged from 14 to 17, and the racers had a wide variety of experience on the board at the Forest City Velodrome. Fourteen year old Keltie Campbell (Ottawa), took the opening 500m (43.15), the quickest time of the meet in this category. Kartherine Marentette (London) followed closely for second (43.31) and another 14 year old, Claudia Newdick (Cambridge), had a solid ride for third (43.52). This category was to be the most competitive division of the day.
In event #2 - the Flying Lap - Marentette broke the 10 second barrier (9.66). New rider Sarah Fonger (Strathroy) had an outstanding time of 9.93 seconds to move into third overall after two events. Newdick was the most consistent, with another third place finish at 10.15. Campbell slid back to fourth and was never able to mount a comeback in the third event.
Riding at the FCV for less than two weeks, Sarah Fonger surprised everyone with an outstanding ride in the second 500m TT of the afternoon. Fonger improved her time by half a second, while everyone else was getting tired and slowed down from their first ride. Marentette closed the deal and took the top step on the podium with a time of 44.02, followed by Fonger, with Claudia Newdick in third with a time of 44.35. Rounding out the podium was Keltie Campbell and Emily Fonger (Strathroy).
Under 17 Boys Clif Bar Youth Championships
for the second year in a row, Connor Byway (Ottawa) dominates the FCV Youth Championships. Last summer, Byway won all events in the Provincial Championships, and again he repeated this very difficult achievement. The 14 year old from Ottawa was the only rider to go under 39 seconds (38.61) in the opening 500m, and backed up the performance with a 39.02 in the second 500m. Connor also had an outstanding effort in the Flying lap (9.01) to win the overall U17 Omnium with three straight wins.
A "Battle Royal" was on for the remaining spots on the podium. This seesaw match up had the next four riders swapping the finishing positions in each event. Derek Gee (Ottawa), Dawson Lucier (Hamilton), Jesse Schultz (Hamilton) and Cam Mason (London) took turns posting the quickest times behind Byway to determine the final positions on the podium.
In the second event, the 138m Flying Lap saw Cam Mason (London) have a very strong lap and nailed down second with Lucier and Gee coming in third and fourth. The race order was set, and the final event - the Standing 500m - would spell disaster for the young Mason, as he would finish sixth and take himself out of the running for second place on the podium, winding up fifth on the day.
The pressure was starting to build, with three riders now competing for the top of the podium. Next up was Jesse Schultz, who had a good ride in the final 500m, however, the fatigue was beginning to show as Schultz slowed from his first ride and had to settle for fourth over all.
Now it was Lucier's turn to light up the boards in his final effort of the afternoon. Dawson Lucier would lay down the third best time in this round. All he could do was to watch Derek Gee during his final effort in this the deciding event of the afternoon. Gee laid down the second best time (40.51) to finish just behind Byway and take silver after three events. Lucier took Bronze, Schultz was fourth and Mason fifth.
The FCV would like to thank all the volunteers and parents for helping to make the 2012 Cliff Bar Youth Championships a success. Also the FCV would like to encourage all cyclists to thank the retail stores where you purchase Cliff Bars - the word will get back to the distributor and this will allow them to increase their commitment to track cycling for the 2013 Youth Championships.
For more information about the Forest City Velodrome and Track cycling, please go to www.ForestCityVelodrome.ca.
The next race at the FCV is Saturday night, February 25th at 7:00 pm. Sprinters will take center stage, with a multi-division sprint series. Also included will be the FCV Youth Racers, plus endurance races and madisons.
See you on the boards.
Report courtesy Rob Good
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