Posted by Editoress on 10/9/16
Canada won two gold medals and a bronze on Day 4 of the Pan Am Track Championships in Aguascalientes, Mexico, on Saturday. Aidan Caves (Vancouver) won the overall title in the Men's Omnium, while Jasmin Glaesser (Coquitlam, BC) took the Women's Points Race title, with Ariane Bonhomme (Gatineau, Quebec) finishing third. The Pan Am Championships are the continental championships, and provide valuable points for obtaining starting positions at the world championships.
Caves entered the second day of competition in the six race Omnium with a perfect record of three wins. He continued that streak in the next two events - the 1000 metre Time Trial and Flying Lap - to begin the final Points Race with a commanding lead. In the Points Race he rode more conservatively, finishing third, to win the overall title with 246 points. Julio Padilla (Guatemala) won the Points Race to finish second overall with 228 points, followed by Zak Kovalcik (USA) at 208 points.
In the Women's Points Race, Glaesser took a lap early on the field and then maintained her lead through the rest of the race, finishing with 37 points. Team mate Bonhomme also took a lap later in the race to finish with 24 points, only two points out of silver, which was won by Arlenis Sierra of Cuba.
"It was a relatively small field with only 13 riders, so that makes for a tactical race," explained Glaesser. "There were some good sprinters and some experienced riders, but I like that challenge with the tactical side to it. Having Ariane out there allowed us to play a strategy and have two cards to play. You don't always get that opportunity, and I'm glad we were able to come out of the race with two medals."
"It was the first time that I have done a Points Race in the elite category," said Bonhomme. "So it was a lot different coming into the race, especially with two riders per country, which made for a different strategy. Jasmin and I tried to help each other while still going for our own results. I was able to take a lap around the midpoint in the race when there was a lull, which put me into second, but the Cuban girl won the final sprint which put me third. But it's pretty nice to finish third in your first elite race; it was pretty exciting."
In other competition, Kinley Gibson of Edmonton sits third in the standings after the first three events on the Women's Omnium, with 108 points. Marlies Mejias of Cuba leads with 118 points. Both Stefan Ritter (Edmonton, Alberta) and Joel Archambault (Sainte-Christine, Quebec) bowed out of the Men's Sprint in the quarterfinal round, with Archambault finishing seventh overall and Ritter eighth.
The Pan Am Championships conclude on Sunday.
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