Wanaka cy­clist re­flects on se­ries win

Central Otago Mirror - - CLASSIFIEDS - MAR­JORIE COOK

Mikayla Har­vey, 19, is not rest­ing on her lau­rels after snatch­ing the 2017 Calder Ste­wart Cy­cle Se­ries ti­tle from de­fend­ing triple cham­pion Shar­lotte Lu­cas, in Oc­to­ber.

New Zealand’s 2017 un­der-23 time trial cham­pion is plan­ning another raid on the elite ranks of women’s road cy­cling at the 2018 na­tional cham­pi­onships in Napier in Jan­uary.

But a size­able con­tin­gent of other un­der-23 women will also be gun­ning for the line, in­clud­ing Har­vey’s Team Il­lu­mi­nate team mate Ge­or­gia Catterick.

‘‘I want to come in the top three in elites, which is quite a big goal. There’s quite a few pro­fes­sional rid­ers around like Rush­lee Buchanan, who are likely to be very good so I am want­ing to hang on to them.

‘‘Then there’s all the rid­ers from the Calder Ste­wart se­ries, in­clud­ing Shar­lotte. She’s my arch ri­val,’’ Har­vey ad­mit­ted.

Reflecting on her se­ries win, Har­vey agreed had Lu­cas raced with a team in the first of the six races, in­stead of as an in­di­vid­ual, Lu­cas could well have won her fourth ti­tle.

Har­vey (Mike Greer Homes) had just seven points up her sleeve in the de­cid­ing 108km race in Christchurch and raced ag­gres­sively to sec­ond place, be­hind Lu­cas (Cy­cle Surgery).

Lu­cas tri­umphed in the bunch sprint to win in two hours and fifty nine min­utes, but was still four points be­hind se­ries win­ner Har­vey.

Har­vey said her own de­ci­sion mak­ing in the Ti­maru leg of the se­ries in April could also have had ram­i­fi­ca­tions.

‘‘I de­cided not to chase her [Lu­cas] down [in a break­away]. I re­gret that, as the gap in points closed. But say­ing that, it ended up be­ing a re­ally awe­some se­ries,’’ Har­vey said.

A sec­ond pro­fes­sional cam­paign with Team Il­lu­mi­nate looms in 2018.

‘‘That is a to­tally dif­fer­ent level. In New Zealand I am able to race on the front. The rac­ing for me is very tac­ti­cal. But in the United States I am not the strong­est rider. For me, I am just sit­ting in the bunch and try­ing to hold on . . . It’s a def­i­nite eye opener,’’ she said.

Har­vey will com­pete in as many Cen­tral Otago Wakatipu Cy­cle Club races as she can this sum­mer.

She is also set­ting up a home­k­itchen based business, My Lit­tle Pantry, to sell wheat and dairy free desserts and snacks at Wanaka’s Farm­ers’ Mar­ket.

MAR­JORIE COOK

Mikayla Har­vey is pre­par­ing for the na­tional cham­pi­onships in Jan­uary.

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