The 2014 Easter Grand Prix heralded several cyclists who put in sterling performances that ensured patrons got their monies’ worth.
Held over the weekend from Good Friday to Easter Sunday, and shared between the two venues of the Arima Velodrome and Skinner Park in San Fernando, the annual three-day cycling extravaganza also threw up some pulsating finishes.
Standing out among the local riders were Elite One competitor Keron Bramble of Rigtech Sonics and Bike Smith’s junior female rider Keiana Lester.
Bramble compiled a record of eight victories, including the keirin event for international riders, and two second place finishes while Lester dominated her category with seven wins and also captured the female keirin, where she competed against the international and senior ladies.
Their exploits saw them cop the “Most Outstanding” Elite 1 and Junior Ladies awards, respectively.
Among the international riders, it was Jamaica’s Marloe Rodman and Daniela Gaxiola of Mexico who stood out.
Rodman had stiff competition from Holland’s Yoeri Havik, who compiled four wins, a second and a fourth place finish but three victories together with a second, two thirds and two fourth place finishes saw the Jamaican edge Havik for the “Most Outstanding” international rider award.
Gaxiola, however, would register the best record of the meet with 12 wins in an unbeaten stint in the senior and International Ladies category that saw her walk away with the “Most Outstanding” award. One of her many triumphs came in the female match sprint.
Njisane Phillip was at the centre of one of the mouth-watering clashes when he featured in a keen duel with Team DPS rider Quincy Alexander for the match sprint crown. He would clinch the title in two straight rides but Alexander ensured that he sweated for it.
Meanwhile, national rider Adam Alexander featured in what was probably the closest finish of the programme in Sunday’s three-lap event.
While most riders had their eyes on Phillip on the final lap, Alexander burst from the pack, with Rodman slightly ahead of him, in an attempt to grab the win. Both riders flashed past the finish line together requiring a photo-finish to decide the winner. The frame showed that Rodman got the victory with just about an inch separating the two riders.
Phillip had two wins at the meet while Alexander’s single victory came together with four runner-up placings.
Most Outstanding awardees
International men: Marloe Rodman (Jamaica)
Senior and international ladies: Daniela Gaxiola (Mexico)
Elite 1: Keron Bramble (Sonics)
Elite 2: Jymes Bridges (Team DPS)
Elite 3: Urba Bourne (Southampton)
Elite 4: Ashton Simpson (Team PSL)
Junior (men): Luis Chia (Colombia)
Junior (ladies): Keiana Lester (Bike Smith)
Juveniles (male): Tyler Cole (Sonics)
Juveniles (female): Dominique Lovell (Arima Wheelers)
Tinymites (male): Jabari Whiteman (Southclaine)
Tinymites (female): Chenelle Walcott (Bike Smith)
Masters 40-49: Roger Smart (Madonna)
Masters 50-59: Cyril Fook (Parkside)
Masters 60-69: Clyde Pollonais (Southclaine)
Masters 70+: Lloyd Joseph (Southampton)