New Zealanders dominate elite finals
CYCLING: The Kiwis came, saw and conquered Bundy.
New Zealand riders Emily Shearman and Nicole Shields won five of the seven races in the elite women’s class at the Auswide Bank International Cycling Spectacular over the weekend, show their talent as some of the best young riders in the world.
But they didn’t have it all their own way.
In the 1600m wheel race handicap on Saturday they were beaten by 14-year-old pocket rocket Deneaka Blinco.
The Rockhampton junior started 70 and 80 metres ahead of the Kiwi duo and powered home in the final two laps to take the win ahead of her adult rivals.
The performance impressed Shearman who took out the scratch and the elimination events at the Spectacular.
“She’s one to look out for in the future, definitely,” she said.
“I had a great time at the carnival.” Shearman conceded she had problems getting used to the outdoor arena, the heat and the gearing.
“I stuffed up the gearing (on Friday), which was quite bad,” she said.
“I probably chose too big of a gear.”
Shearman was pleased to end the meet with wins, particularly in the scratch.
For Blinco, she couldn’t believe the wheel race trophy was hers.
“I caught up to the train and I let them all do their turns and then I went,” she said.
“I was over the moon I won, I didn’t expect to win.
“I’m really happy with how I raced.”
It was a great night for Blinco who finished second in both the keirin and the scratch, behind the New Zealanders.
Shields won the keirin, the derby and another scratch race held on Friday.
“I was really nervous heading into the race (keirin) for some reason,” she said.
“I wanted to have a good tactical race and I think I did that well.
“It’s been great here, everyone has been so welcoming and the organisers are amazing.”
The Kiwi duo will now head to the national titles in a few weeks. SPRINT: New Zealander Nicole Shields competes.