Maharajh, Team DPS in action at Cycling W/Cup
Kern De Freitas
Njisane Phillip will lead Trinidad and Tobago’s quest to pick up valuable racing points at the second leg of the UCI Track Cycling World Cup at Velodromo Bicentenario in Aguascalientes, Mexico, starting today from 2 p.m. (TT time).
Phillip and Varun Maharajh will be pedalling off in T&T colours as they attempt to qualify for next year’s World Championships in Cali, Columbia in February/March. Quincy Alexander, Jude Codrington and Justin Roberts will also be looking for points with Team DPS.
While Phillip will start things off with the sprints tomorrow, Maharajh will be in action today in the men’s omnium (flying lap, 30km points race and elimination). Team DPS will ride off in the team sprint, also today.
US-based Phillip, the Pan American sprint champion, will try to better his performances in the sprint and keirin events after a good showing at the previous World Cup installment in Manchester, England last month. Then, he finished second to German Robert Forstemann in the sprint, while he just missed out on the keirin final before eventually finishing 12th.
He will have some stiff competition from some of the world’s top riders, including Olympic champion Jason Kenny, who will be keen to bounce back from his first round exit in the sprints at home in Manchester. Kenny topped Phillip in the “semis” of the 2012 Olympics.
Maharajh, in his first year on the World Cup circuit, will be looking to improve on his performances in Manchester in the omnium event the second time around.
In addition to the team sprint, Alexander and Roberts will also pedal off for Team DPS in the kilometre time trial event. The latter duo have also already shown their form in Mexico last weekend at the Internacional Copa de Pista (International Track Cup), where they mounted the podium in the “kilo”, with Alexander second and Roberts third.
Both riders also set personal bests in the competition, with Roberts breaking his own national junior record. Codrington also shone with bronze in the keirin.
The World Cup ends on Saturday.