Akil Campbell

FIRST WORLD CHAMPS: Akil Campbell

WORLD RECORD HOLDER Nicholas Paul will travel with Team TTO compatriot Akil Campbell to the 2021 UCI Track Cycling World Championships from October 20 to 24 at the Velodrome Couvert Regional Jean-Stablinski in Roubaix, France.

Paul will transfer from his base at the World Cycling Centre in Switzerland with coach Craig Mc Clean who will serve as both Team TTO manager/coach for the competition.

Campbell and Elisha Greene (mechanic) are tentatively scheduled to leave Trinidad Saturday. Paul will pedal off in the sprint, keirin, and kilometre time trial events, while Campbell is entered in the omnium, scratch race and elimination.

“Definitely for Akil (Campbell), this will be a new experience for him at that World stage, so we expect that he will use this as an opportunity to gauge where he is at, based on the competition as well...We look forward to him doing well, but mainly to see where he is at, at that level now,” said Rowena Williams, Trinidad and Tobago Cycling Federation (TTCF) president.

“For Nicholas, we have seen him really advancing over the months as well in his performances, so we definitely are looking forward to a good showing from him,” Williams added.

The main purpose of this Worlds is as a qualifier for the inaugural six-round UCI Champions League that pedals off next month.

The UCI has given Paul, as world record holder in the men’s flying 200 metres, an automatic bye, while gold medal performances will automatically advance riders to the League.

Campbell will still have to earn his berth. Williams is stoked about the implications for the Champions League meet.

“I like the new format, it is really to showcase the cyclists right now that are dominating in the world. It is also really to promote the sport and to promote the entire region,” Williams said.

“It is exciting and it is going to create more opportunities for sponsorship and investment in the athletes and cyclists themselves.”

The Champions League will be featuring the world’s best and highest-profile riders and will be extensively broadcast worldwide, across Discovery-owned channels including Eurosport, linear television, and streaming plus the Global Cycling Network (GCN)+ and the GCN Racing digital channels.

Rankings will be determined by points allocated to riders from their performance in each race, which will count towards a league table.

The overall winner in each of the categories will be the rider with the most points at the end of the series.

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