Canadian Cyclist


January 6/03 9:20 am - Hughes Triple Gold, Hamilton 2010 Track Support

Posted by Editor on 01/6/03

Hughes Triple Gold at Canadian Speedskating Championships

Clara Hughes won a three gold medals at the Canadian long track speed skating championships, held in Calgary on the past weekend, setting a track record in the 5000m event. On Saturday (January 4th), the 5000m Olympic bronze medalist won the 1500m (1:58.82 - a personal best) and 3000m (4:04.97) events. Yesterday (January 5th), the Commonwealth Games cycling gold medalist continued her winning streak with a time of 6:54.91 in the 5000, 1.38 seconds slower then her bronze medal time. By sweeping all three events, Hughes took the women's all-around national title. Earlier in the week, fellow cyclist/skater Cindy Klassen won the sprint event all-around title by winning the 1000m event and finishing second to Catriona Le May Doan in the 500m.

More 2010 Commonwealth Games Track Support

From Maurice Jefferies:

As a former Canadian National Cycling Track Coach at both Commonwealth and Olympic Games I was shocked to see that Track Cycling is not part of Hamilton's bid for the 2010 Commonwealth Games. This is unacceptable to the Provincial, National and International Cycling World. As you may well know, Canada has won many track medals at the Commonwealth Games, to be exact 7 Golds,6 Silver and 9 Bronze, beginning with McLeod's 10 mile win in 1934, and continuing with Jocelyn Lovell's win in the same event in 1970 and 1978. Curt Harnett and Gord Singleton are also Canadian track medal winners and Ontario residents.

I do not know why Hamilton decided not to include Track Cycling, excuses can always be found,but I can not believe it was because of the cost. Tracks are not expensive compared with other major sports complexes. It does not have to to be built like the Montreal Velodrome, which was an architectural marvel. Tracks for a Games can be permanent, temporary or rented. The track for the 1974 World Championships in Montreal was temporary, so were the tracks for the '96 Atlanta Olympics and the '99 Winnipeg Pan Am Games, these were sold after the Games, the Atlanta track is now at Bromont Quebec. Hamilton will be organising the 2003 World Road Cycling Championships,and I am sure they will do a good job.

As the Technical Director for the 1974 World Cycling Championships, the 1976 Olympic Games, the 1999 Pan Am Games and Track Manager for the 1996 Olympic Games I am fully aware of the work involved. New Delhi, India the other bidder for the 2010 Commonwealth Games, was successful in organising an excellent Asian Games in 1982, which I must mention included Road and Track Cycling, I was the Chief Cycling Official there.

No doubt you will be expecting full support for your bid from the major Commonwealth countries, England, Scotland, Wales, Australia, New Zealand etc. etc. These countries have invested heavily in their track teams, and are reaping the benefit with medals. I am sure they will not support a bid that excludes track cycling. The Union Cycliste Internationale, UCI,are also pushing for more track racing with World Cups, Senior and Junior Championships, and would not welcome a Games without Track Cycling. I am sure Hamilton is serious about these Games, but they must include Track Cycling, as I mentioned before tracks do not have to be permanent and do not have to be indoors, the costs are minimal compared to the overall costs of the Games.

Last but not least you have a World Class track designer and builder who lives in Ontario not far from Hamilton (ed. note: this refers to Peter Junek). Looking forward to hearing from you on this matter.

Yours Sincerely,

Maurice Jefferies

If you have not written your letter urging the Hamilton bid to include track cycling, then please set aside some time to do so. Our editorial on the situation can be found in the December 18/02 Noon posting.


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