News | Cycling
23 Feb 2018 3:42
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  •   Home > News > Sports > Cycling

    Sprint trio lead NZ track cycling team

    New Zealand's 18-strong team to next month's track cycling world championships in the Netherlands will be led by the men's gold medal-winning sprint trio.

    Gold medal-winning Kiwi sprint trio Ethan Mitchell, Sam Webster and Eddie Dawkins will anchor New Zealand's 18-strong team to next month's track cycling world championships in the Netherlands.

    Mitchell, Webster and Dawkins have medalled in each of the last six years, winning rainbow jerseys in 2014, 2016 and last year.

    Success at Apeldoorn in March would make them the first team outside Europe to win the men's team sprint world title three times in a row.

    Nick Kergozou, Regan Gough and Dylan Kennett return in the men's endurance squad from the group that won silver last year, joined by exciting teenagers Campbell Stewart and Tom Sexton, who impressed in World Cup performances prior to Christmas.

    The experienced Rushlee Buchanan heads the women's endurance group, joining Racquel Sheath, Kirsty Klingenberg and teenager Michaela Drummond from the team which won bronze medal last year.

    Double junior world championship medallist Bryony Botha completes the group, with the experienced Jaime Nielsen not recovered from illness following her successful national one-hour record bid.

    The team has a strong emphasis on youth, with an average age of under 23 years and with five teenagers included.

    The nine riders in the team who are 21 or younger having amassed 20 junior world championship medals between them over the last five years.

    The sprint squad is a record eight-strong with the group including world junior champion Bradly Knipe and Manawatu's Jordan Castle.

    For the first time, three riders comprise the women's sprint group with world No.5 Natasha Hansen joined by double junior world championship medallists Emma Cumming and Olivia Podmore.

    High performance director Martin Barras says the combination of youth and experience bodes well for the future.

    "We have a healthy mix of proven performance and riders for the future in the team going to Apeldoorn.

    "Of course the men's team sprint are the beacon for this group but we also have key members of the endurance squads in men and women who have Olympic experience and medalled at the world championships in Hong Kong last year."

    The team leaves for the world championships on February 19, two days after the full cycling team is named for the Commonwealth Games.

    The team is:

    Sprint: Jordan Castle, Emma Cumming, Eddie Dawkins, Natasha Hansen , Bradly Knipe, Ethan Mitchell, Olivia Podmore, Sam Webster.

    Endurance: Bryony Botha, Rushlee Buchanan, Michaela Drummond, Regan Gough, Dylan Kennett, Nick Kergozou, Kirstie Klingenberg, Tom Sexton, Racquel Sheath, Campbell Stewart.


    © 2018 NZN, NZCity

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