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Cycling returns to City

Justin Marville

Cycling returns to City

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Cycling is making its big City comeback.
For the first time in two decades, Bridgetown will become a closed circuit today as Barbados is be treated to top local racing when the second criterion of the season’s final series hits The City course this evening.
The best of this season – Darren Matthews, Esther Miller-Rosemond, Russell Elcock, Kristin Vanderpool and Sedwin Jones – are all expected to feature in an event slated to go around 30 laps for an hour of intense competition.
The event starts at Heroes Square at 3 p.m., and will proceed towards Bridge Street and the Charles Duncan O’Neal Bridge before the riders turn right onto Bay Street.
From there, they turn right at Independence Square before returning to the Charles Duncan O’Neal Bridge to go onto The Wharf Road and Prince Alfred Street.
The riders then turn right onto Broad Street and circle that route several times before finishing at the starting point, Heroes Square.
Sweeping the national road race titles for the first time this year, Matthews once again starts as the clear favourite in the senior division after taking the last 40-lap criterion on the Fontabelle Circuit two weeks ago.
 “It’s going to be an extremely fast race, so spectators won’t want to miss this one,” said Barbados Cycling Union public relations officer Colin Forde.
“This is more for the spectators than anything else but this is still going to be very competitive because of the pace of the event.”
But the season’s real story has been Miller-Rosemond, who capped a lengthy hiatus from the sport by also sweeping the women’s national road race titles before winning a bronze at the just concluded Caribbean Elite Road Race Championships.
Cycling’s big comeback story has lost just once in eight starts on the local scene, having also won her division on the Fontabelle route.
Elcock, the country’s preeminent junior and two-time national road and time-trial champ, will be looking to extend a two-year unbeaten streak on the road while Kristin Vanderpool seeks to continue his dominance of the juvenile category.
The race also marks the return of regional race-car champion Stuart Maloney to the road as he faces master rivals Sedwin Jones, Gregory Catwell, Reginald Jones and Andrew Quimby.