Devante Laurence emerged as the top rider in the male tinymites category at the Trinidad and Tobago Cycling Federation (TTCF) Youth National Championships at Irwin Park in Siparia on the weekend. The Arima Wheelers cyclist captured four of the six individual titles on offer.
Laurence was on fire on Saturday, the 13-year-old Queen’s Royal College student striking gold in all three events. He opened with victory in the 500 metres time trial in 42.435 seconds. Laurence followed up with a dominant performance in the 1,333.33m individual pursuit. He returned a time of two minutes, 04.969 seconds for a huge margin of victory on Rigtech Sonics rider Aron Matas, the silver medallist in 2:10.84.
Laurence qualified fastest in the flying 200, stopping the clock at 14.28 seconds. Mosi Williamson of Sonics was next best at 15.10. In the best-of-three gold medal showdown, Laurence won in two straight rides to emerge as national under-15 sprint champion.
On Sunday, Laurence added keirin gold to his collection. He finished strong to win his fourth individual title at the Championships, forcing Southclaine’s Jarel Mohammed to settle for silver.
In addition to his four gold medals, Laurence picked up a couple silvers. He finished second to Matas in the 8-lap scratch race, and was the runner-up to Williamson in the 9-lap points race.
Matas and Williamson were key for Sonics in the club’s team sprint and team pursuit triumphs. Laurence, Mohammed and Sonics rider Isaiah Frontin combined for silver in both team events.
Alexia Wilson was dominant in the female tinymites category. On Saturday, the Arima Wheelers cyclist grabbed time trial, individual pursuit and sprint gold. She clocked 45.633 seconds in the time trial, 2:24.954 in the pursuit, and 16.901 in the flying 200. On Sunday, Wilson joined forces with Mariska Van de Werken of Sonics for the team sprint title.
There was exciting competition too among the BMX riders. Judah Neverson of Sonics was outstanding in the boys’ under-13 category, winning his five individual events. Kyra Williams of Open Road Challenge Accepted did the same in the girls’ under-13 division.
Kafele De Sormeaux of Arima Wheelers and Open Road’s Jaquan Elbourne got two wins apiece in the boys’ under-11 category. Elbourne’s teammate, Shemeka Hoyte was the top girls’ under-11 rider. Hoyte got good competition from Maia Seyjagat of Arima Wheelers.
Also very impressive were Sonics pair Jahziel Gordon (boys’ under-9) and Melina Lopez (girls’ under-7), Open Road’s Renee Fortune (girls’ under-9), and diminutive Phoenix rider Elisha Greene Jr (boys’ under-7).
Greene’s father and coach, former national cyclist Elisha Greene Sr won easily in an entertaining coaches and officials race. The crowd was thoroughly entertained as grown men battled for two laps on undersized BMX bikes.