Marquardt Doubles Up While Brister Gains First Title

Kim Zubris throws her Madison partner Kim Geist into the race. Photo by Dan Chabanov

Marquardt Doubles Up While Brister Gains First Title

June 15, 2018

TTown continued it’s sprint tournaments on Friday night June 15th, 2018 while hosting the first UCI Women’s Madison event in it’s history. The second week of sprinting saw blustery conditions for the morning sprint qualifiers, which completely changed the men’s race dynamic. On the women’s side, Mandy Marquardt (USA) and Canadian Lauriane Genest had closer races against Young (NZL) and Knox (AUS) from down under. The UCI Endurance events showcased a bike throw at the line and our Pro-Am races for the Rider of the Year points saw a completely new group enter the standings.

UCI Women’s Madison an Exciting Beginning

Amber Joseph (BAR) and Christina Birch (USA) claim the UCI Women's Madison

Amber Joseph (BAR) and Christina Birch (USA) claim the UCI Women’s Madison. Photo by Julia Samuels

Six Madison pairings took to the track on Friday evening to contest the first UCI Women’s Madison in TTown’s history. Reigning US National Champions Kim Geist and Kim Zubris were matched against a mixed pairing of Chistina Birch (USA) and Amber Joseph (BAR) riding for Foundation for American Track Cycling. A 60 lap event with sprints every 6, the two women’s teams went 1-2 in different orders throughout the race but a pair of timely exchanges on sprint laps secured the mixed pairings points total to claim victory over our local Kim & Kim duo.

Men’s Sprint Tournament start with a blustery day, upending the Suriname Missile

James Brister (left) and Thomas Clarke (right) raced each other for the gold medal round. Photo by Dan Chabanov

James Brister (left) and Thomas Clarke (right) raced each other for the gold medal round. Photo by Dan Chabanov

Jair Tjon En Fa (SUR) has never NOT been in the finals in TTown, but this week he was upended in the sprint rounds. In the 200m qualifiers, he appeared to be on a good day, tying with Hugo Barrette (CAN) at 10.358 (69.5kph) and only seated second due to his slightly slower final 100m time. Indeed, he raced through the 1/8 round against Joel Archambault (CAN) but in the 1/4 round, he was matched against Olympian Njisane Phillip (TTO). Phillip only qualified in 10th place, well off the pace set on June 8th. This left him paired against Tjon En Fa but he surprised the Suriname rider in the first round and then again in the second, knocking Tjon En Fa out of a TTown sprint tournament for the first time. That wasn’t the only upset of the morning, though. Of the riders who made it to the evening Semifinals, only Barrette was from the original top 4 bye-rounds. James Brister (AUS) qualified 12th, Phillip in 10th, and Thomas Clarke (AUS) qualified 6th. These three riders worked their way back into contention in the match sprints showing how unpredictable bike racing can be!

Once in the Semifinals, the morning sessions showed their fatigue on the riders. Phillip was knocked out in two rides by Clarke with convincing rides. Brister and Barrette challenged each other more thoroughly but Barrette’s aggressive riding may have cost him the finals, as he was handed an A8 relegation in the first round, even though he did not need to come into the sprinter’s lane in front of Brister. In the second round, Brister outsmarted Barrette, although it was a close match and Barrette was frustrated by his second week in a row of not making it to the finals. In a twist of fate, then, we saw two roommates from Australia taking to the track in the finals. In what seemed like convincing sprints by Brister, the UCI Commissaires handed Brister a relegation on the second round, forcing them to three rides. Clarke astonished the crowd with a late dive down the track to the sprinter’s lane but Brister was able to edge around Clarke in the final 20 meters and claim the Fastest Man on Wheels title.

Marquardt is 2 for 2 in 2018

Mandy Marquardt (USA) out kicks Lauriane Genest (CAN) to the line. Photo by Dan Chabanov

Mandy Marquardt (USA) outkicks Lauriane Genest (CAN) to the line. Photo by Dan Chabanov

The women from New Zealand and Australia made it a bit farther this week but the finishing speeds of Mandy Marquardt (USA) and Lauriane Genest (CAN) proved too quick yet again. Tess Young (NZL) and Sophie Knox (AUS) knocked out very powerful riders from the quarterfinals, proving they can hold their own on the world stage. Young was challenged by the strong Kelsey Mitchell (CAN) while Knox used some brilliant timing to overtake Rachel McKinnon (CAN) to move into the Semis. Once in the semis, the earlier efforts and the windy day showed in the legs of the women from down under and they succumbed to racing for Bronze. Once in that round, though, it was an amazing show. Indeed, check out Sophie Knox’s Instagram for an amazing photo set of when she and Young touched wheels in Turn 1 while racing hip to hip on the banking. They had four starts, one relegation, one warning, and three finishes. We throw around the term “battle” a lot but they really did have a go of it, and the crowd loved it.

In the gold medal races, Genest changed her tactics each race to beat Marquardt but Marquardt’s finishing speed was continually too much for the Canadian. In two rounds, Marquardt solidified her gold medal and the title Fastest Woman on Wheels. In a true step up for the American, she has now claimed two UCI sprint race weekends in a row.

Geist, Kovalcik, and Kline win UCI Endurance Races


June 15th saw two UCI Men’s Endurance races. In the morning, Zak Kovalcik (USA) of Portland, OR won the very hot, windy, and fast Points Race with a very gutsy solo move mid-race to gain 15 points while the field could not collaborate to collect him. That was enough to take the win by a few points over Jamol Eastmond (BAR) and Tom Rotherham (GBR). The women’s AM UCI endurance featured a 10km Scratch race and Kim Geist and Kim Zubris went 1-2 with a strong lead out collaboration.

In the PM programming, the men had a 15km scratch race. A much different race than the previous 3 UCI endurance events for the men, this race did not see a successful breakaway. Perhaps it was the few sprinters in there like Jackson Ogle (NZL), Matthew Richardson (AUS), Braeden Dean (AUS), Tom Rotherham, or his brother Matt Rotherham (GBR) or the entire Trinidad and Tobago team but the field was continually brought back together. That said, a late race attack but local Andrew Bernstein (USA) brought the crowd to their feet for a few laps but as the pace quickened for the final push, Bernstein was absorbed and the field sprint was set. Kwesi Browne (TTO), Jamol Eastmond (BAR), Edwin Sutherland (BAR), Hayden Strong (NZL), Akil Campbell (TTO) each knocked each other around fighting for position with a few laps remaining. But the inevitable field sprint was realized and with 500m to go, it was Zak Kovalcik who went for it again. With the crowd stomping the grandstands, Kovalcik put his head down but from the field, it was Shane Kline (USA), a rider who learned how to ride a bike on the Velodrome in the very Bicycle Racing League we celebrated tonight, who was the one who lead the charge for the win. Kovalcik held strong through turn 4 but Kline came over the top, throwing his bike to the line and collected the valuable UCI win. “I feel like the monkey is off my back getting this win today,” said Kline afterwards. Indeed, even though he’s won the Tour of Somerville this year, collecting those UCI points for a hopeful spot on the USA National team this winter is his main goal.

Pro-Am Racing Sees a New Male Rider of the Year while Erickson Holds on

32 women took to the track for the Pro-Am Rider of the Year races. Photo by Dan Chabanov

32 women took to the track for the Pro-Am Rider of the Year races. Photo by Dan Chabanov

The Rider of the Year competition is heating up on the second week. With a limited amount of time, only two races were offered – a 10 lap Win-n-Out and Tempo Points Races. Both races were completely full with the men’s race holding a waiting list to participate so those who made the starting line left nothing in the tank. Speeds were insanely high, popping riders off the back on every lap. In the men’s field, Sam Dakin (NZL) won the Win-n-Out while Australian Maddie Janssen took the women’s race in heartbreaking fashion over Kim Geist by pipping her at the line. In the Tempo race, Justin Bustavage described the men’s race, “like a 20 lap keirin!” The insane pace was completely from the Trinidad and Tobago national team trying to get Kwesi Browne back into the lead of the ROY standings, knowing he lost it in the Win-n-Out. But with 36 riders on the track, it was impossible to control the field, and other riders started to collect points. In fact, so many other riders collected points, that we saw completely new names entering the standings after that race. The women’s race was no different with 32 riders on the track, Missy Erickson was unable to place in the top 5, while Amber Joseph had a phenomenal night and moved within 1 point of the American. Check out the ROY page for complete standings.

Next week is our Keirin competition, Festival of Speed! Come early to get some cheap beer, great food, and prime seats in the grandstands!

June 15 Start Lists

June 15th AM Results

June 15th PM Results

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