– Anthony 7th, Husbands 9th, Juveniles Leung and Hicks place 4th and 6th
By Franklin Wilson in Suriname with the compliments of Fitness Express
Brilliant and courageous riding by debutant Alanzo Ambrose ensured that Guyana did not come away from the 9th Junior Caribbean Cycling Championships without a medal.
Coming against the odds with the Caribbean’s most feared cyclist at this level, Michael Anthony already being hounded down by the opposition, Ambrose overcame some uncertainty at the finish line to take the bronze medal in the junior category which was won by Trinidad and Tobago’s Akil Campbell who also won the Time Trials the day before. Jonathan Croes of Bermuda took the silver.
Campbell’s winning time in the 92 km contest was Two Hours 20 minutes 43.933 Seconds; Croes was timed at 2:20:58.040 and Ambrose 2:21:24.391. Anthony ended 7th in 2:27:07.399, while Stephano Husbands placed 9th in 2:28:59.213 as Guyana took three places in the top 10, a creditable performance.
In the Juvenile category, the lack of unfamiliarity of the event course cost Guyana a possible silver and bronze, Raphael Leung and fellow debutant Andrew Hicks were on course to do well but missed the official route twice which saw them ending 4th and 6th despite having only two riders in the race as compared to six in the case of host nation Suriname, many of the other nations fielding four riders each.
Apart from missing the route coming down to the end of the race, both Leung and Hicks suffered falls during the event, Hicks suffering the most with abrasions to his left hand, wrist and side. But despite the pains, the determination shown by the duo augurs well for Guyana in the future.
The juvenile 62 km race was won by T&T’s Tyler Cole who had to settle for the Time Trial bronze on Saturday, he went all the way yesterday (1:49:26.912), turning the tables on Time Trial silver medalist Tyler Smith of Bermuda who took another silver (1:49:30.492) with the bronze going to Tremaine Forde Catwell of Barbados in 1:51:51.230.
Leung, who gave up a bit too early on the sprint home with Catwell, was timed at 1:51:51.628 with Hicks clocking 1:51:54.551.
In the juvenile race, Ambrose was at the back of the group on the upward journey on the Wijdenbosch Bridge that links Paramaribo with Commewyne, the race pedaled off at Independence Square in the capital, Paramaribo.There was a break 20 minutes into the duel with Ambrose and six others. The lead interchanged at varying intervals as the worked was shared. As the race progressed it became more challenging given the very steamy conditions with heavy winds at times.
Ambrose disclosed that the attitude of the other riders on the break from Barbados, T&T, Aruba and Antigua and Barbuda changed as the battle got tougher but that just brought out the best in the young Guyanese.
“I then assessed the boys to see who was stronger and weaker and I took it from there. If I had another colleague with me it would have been better but I am happy with getting a medal for my country and in my first and last year as a junior.”
Husbands, like Anthony (2013 bronze medalist) were marked up early for special treatment by the opposing riders. Unfortunately, Akeem Arthur suffered a blow out just over one hour into the race which put paid to his chances of bettering his silver last year.
A total of 35 juveniles contested the race with two not finishing, while 29 juniors faced starters orders but 4 four did not complete the distance. Manager/Coach Mark Sonoram, who was looking forward to more medals, said that he was satisfied with the final results, despite.
“I think the guys did well despite us not getting more medals. The two juveniles did us proud and we can look forward to them doing this nation proud in the future. Our junior guys also tried, Ambrose was very good in medaling; Anthony, Husbands and Arthur, who unfortunately suffered a blowout, all tried and they must all be complimented for representing their country with pride and resilience.”
The Twin Island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago capped a fine day when they added the gold and silver in the female race which was the third and final event of the day. Teniel Campbell completed the 5-lap course in 1:55:41.604, countrywoman Keiana Lester clocked a close 1:55:41.718 for silver with the consistent Cherley Linden taking the bronze in 1:55:42.479.
Twelve females started the race with nine completing.
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