Gordon Head’s Erin Attwell continued her success at the U17 level

Gordon Head’s Erin Attwell continued her success at the U17 level

Saanich teens tearing up the track

Saanich junior cyclists dominate B.C. Track Provincial Championships

A group of Saanich teenagers dominated the recent B.C. Track cycling championships at the Greater Victoria Velodrome in Colwood.

Gordon Head resident Erin Attwell, 16, and Claremont student Riley Pickrell, 14, each finished first in all six of the races that make up the omnium category.

Both competed in the U17 category which means moving up from the U15 category that Pickrell is eligible for. It’s becoming quite the norm for the young phenom, said his coach from Tripleshot Cycling’s junior team, Lister Farrar.

“It’s quite impressive that [Pickrell’s] doing so well against the U17s, he just turned 14 in August,” Farrar said. “Earlier this summer he beat the top U19 rider at a race during Super Week in the Mainland. His dedication shows, I don’t think he’s missed a practise at the track in the last two years.”

Pickrell and Attwell are both coming through the Tripleshot Cycling club junior program and the youth Fast Track program at the velodrome. Farrar is involved in both.  Another phenom, Sarah Van Dam of Fernwood in Victoria, won’t turn 14 until December, but is already keeping up with Attwell on the track, Farrar said. Van Dam finished second only to Attwell in the girls U17 omnium.

Tripleshot is sending five athletes to the Canadian Track Championships in Milton, Ont., Oct. 7 to 11. Attwell, Pickrell, Van Dam, Angus Brown (Victoria) and Erin’s twin brother, Adam Attwell, a rower who is now earning strong results in cycling.

“It’s a huge year for us,” Farrar said. “Last year we sent Erin to nationals. Now we have five.”

Farrar has been part of the Victoria cycling scene for decades. Despite the current success of local teen cyclists it is not the result of a cycling renaissance in terms of numbers. He does have a couple of theories, though he’s yet to firm them up.

“I think, if anything, the reason we’re seeing five kids go to nationals from Tripleshot is largely just because we have someone willing to provide the coaching. What we see with the School Bike League is once a parent or teacher commits to running a school program, that school will gain a lot of members, we just need the volunteers.”

This year’s B.C. Track cycling championships were actually delayed from the originally scheduled Labour Day weekend to Sept. 12 and 13. Erin Attwell believed the cooler temperatures may have kept riders from hitting personal bests but it ended up getting pretty hot on the Sunday afternoon, regardless.

“The hardest might have been the individual pursuit, it was really cold, all our times were reasonably slow, she said.

Attwell also noted that her top rival in B.C., Maple Ridge’s Maggie Coles Lister was not there to compete. Attwell expects Coles Lister to be among the challengers at the U17 nationals in two weeks.

“She’s been doing a lot of work on the track lately so I don’t know how we would have done [at provincials]. I was looking forward to the chance to race against her because earlier in the summer we were only a second apart.”

The velodrome’s youth Fast Track program starts in May and runs through to August for just $200, which includes the use of a bike, coaching and track time twice a week for all five months. Youth can also sign up for half at $100. Visit gvva.bc.ca for more information.

John Willcox of Saanich, a Reynolds secondary student, took first place in the U19 omnium. Willcox, 16, was happy with the result. But the national junior team member would have liked a deeper field.

Last month Willcox finished 15th in the one kilometre at the world U19 Track championships in Kazakhstan.

“It’s unfortunate there isn’t more juniors [at provincials], there was only three of us. You [end up] having a bit of fun and practice, getting in people’s heads, whereas with a big field you need to pay more attention.”

Willcox is focused on the team pursuit and the kilometre once again for Milton. Willcox raced in a combined field of U19 riders and elite men, and likely would have finished second in the provincial elite men’s category, but for one race.

Former Tripleshot junior Jay Lamoreaux won the elite men’s provincials, though Willcox did better him in the elimination.



Just Posted

A single-vehicle incident has closed southbound traffic along the Pat Bay Highway from Sayward Road Monday morning. Emergency crews are on scene. (Black Press Media file photo)
TRAFFIC: Single-vehicle incident closes section of Pat Bay

Highway southbound from Sayward Road closed Monday morning

Four residents and two cats were displaced from their home in James Bay when a fire broke out Sunday afternoon. (Black Press Media file photo)
No injuries in James Bay house fire

Fire broke out at about 2 p.m. Sunday

University of Victoria researchers received more than $9 million from the federal government for projects that aim to advance big ideas, discoveries and innovations. (Photo courtesy of UVic)
University of Victoria research boosted with more than $9 million in federal funding

The research funding will support a wide range of projects and study

LeoVegas's promotional art for their survey of Canada's funniest proviences (LeoJoker)
B.C. second-funniest province in Canada: online survey

Dry humour popular with B.C. residents – we’re also boisterous laughers

Coun. Bob Thompson wants authorities to delay the June 30 deadline for submissions to BC Housing’s request-for-proposal to run the supportive housing project at Prosser Road. (Black Press Media File)
Central Saanich calls for delay in supportive housing project deadline

Municipality wants more say in eventual choice of contractor to run supportive housing project

Jesse Roper tackles weeds in his garden to kick off the 2021 season of What’s In My Garden Man? (YouTube/Whats In My Garden)
VIDEO: Metchosin singer-songwriter Jesse Roper invites gardeners into his plot

What’s In My Garden, Man? kicks off with the poop on compost

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

A Lotto 6/49 ticket purchased in Parksville for the June 19, 2021 draw is a $3M winner. (Submitted photo)
Winning Lotto 6/49 ticket worth $3M purchased on Vancouver Island

Lottery prize winners have 52 weeks to claim jackpot

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Most Read