Castle crushes it at Laykold Cup Carnival

Despite the shoddy weather in the morning, a huge 49 riders turned out for the 2015 Laykold Cup including a decent contigent from outside Wellington. Jordan Castle was impressive in the races he rode, showing why he was selected last year for the junior world track championships.

Here’s the official report:

Jordan Castle Laykold Cup King 2015

New Zealand representative Jordan Castle (Bike Manawatu) played his cards perfectly to win the prestigious Laykold Cup held at the Wellington Velodrome on Sunday February 15, out sprinting Dan Waluszewski (Wellington) and James Denholm (West Coast North Island) at the end of a tactical race.

Now held as a 10km scratch, the Laykold Cup has a history running more than 80 years and is one of the North Island’s classic track cycling events with a full programme of supporting events taking place during the day.

With the field more or less intact at third distance, attacks began coming thick and fast with Wellington’s Waluszewski and George Jackson breaking off the front to open up a healthy lead. The bunch behind whittled down as the pace went on to close the gap to the escapees. With six laps to go there were just five riders left together at the front, and Pat Crowe-Rishworth made his bid for glory.

It wasn’t to be however, and led by Bike Manawatu’s Castle, Crowe-Rishworth was overhauled in the final 100m. Despite leading out, Castle’s rapid sprint was too much for Waluszewski and Denholm.


Nick Warren retained the Masters 8km Stayers Cup with a hard-fought win over Jason McCarty (both Wellington). The duo chipped away from the bunch with six laps left on the board and opened up a comfortable margin. However, with two laps remaining, cat and mouse tactics came into play with McCarty forcing Warren to lead the final sprint out. Warren kicked hard though and McCarty wasn’t able to come round, finishing just half a wheel behind. Harry Kent was third.


Sophie Bloxham (Levin) became the first under 17 rider to win the Women’s 8km Poneke Plate, firing out of the peloton on the final lap and crossing the line two clear bike lengths ahead of 2009 champion Hannah Latta (Wellington). Amy Horn was third ahead of Sarah Barclay.


In the junior omniums, George Jackson won the under 17 boys ahead of his Wellington team pursuit team mates Sam Tillotson and Thomas McCullum. Sophie Bloxham headed up the under 17 girls with Amy Horn and Grace Saywell in second and third respectively.

In the under 15s, Damian Hussey (Wanganui) rode strongly to win ahead of Wellington’s Louis Hodgkinson and Dylan Reid while Amelia Taylor (Wellington) won the girls. Ben Leslie and Matt McCarty were joint winners of the under 13 ominium, and Zoe Perry won the under 13 girls ahead of Maia Vertongen.

Full results from the Laykold Cup Carnival are online here and loads more photos are on

A huge thanks to our sponsors:
Salvation CoffeeWellington Windows and Doors, Wellington Powder Coaters, Red Rocks Property ManagementZeal Commercial Interiors, Scotties Potties, Think TurfWellington Podiatry ClinicThe Lanes Bar and Bowling LoungeBurkes CyclesJackson

Skinsuit poetry

So I wore my new skinsuit for the first time in anger yesterday. It was quite a moving experience as I hadn’t gotten a new skinsuit in a very long time and in my opinion they’re really personal bits of kit. To commemorate the occasion, I penned this terrible poem:

Hurrah for skinsuits, so shiny and tight!
Armour to accompany me at every fight.
The last one I bought was in ’96,
But that knows all of my clever tricks.
Now I have this flashy black suit, it’s new!
Made sure to clean so I don’t leave any marks of poo.
So let’s go and race my brand new chum,
And make sure the rest only get to see my bum.

Perry clean sweeps round 2 to take Burkes Cycles Speed League lead

Latest PNP Cycling Club media release:


Grant Perry achieved a clean sweep of all A grade races plus the mixed grade Team Scratch at the Burkes Cycles Speed League track racing meeting at Wellington Velodrome in Hataitai on Sunday November 9, 2014 to take the lead overall.

It’s only the third time a sweep in the A grade has been completed in the history of the Speed League – the most recent was by Louis Higgison last season. This time it was Higgison who had to settle for runner up, finishing second in the 10 lap Scratch and 12 lap Points Race, unable to match Perry’s startling early season form.

The final race of the afternoon, the 20 lap Team Scratch – where riders are randomly grouped together into teams and all score the same points as their highest finisher – again proved to be a thriller. Perry’s yellow team effectively shut down any attacks and he sealed the deal in the bunch gallop for the line.

Meanwhile Henry Tate won three D grade events to head up the under 13 table, edging out Amelia Taylor each time, with May Hodgkinson, Jake Leslie and Zoe Perry scooping up the minor placings. The D grade is expanding steadily and sure to provide more exciting racing as the season progresses.

Grace Saywell and Mark Coburn engaged in a number of close-fought battles in the C grade, with Saywell getting the better of her older rival in the Scratch and Points race but missing out in the Sprinters’ Scratch. Saywell now leads the under 15 overall league table.

In a large and lively B grade, under 15 rider George Jackson picked up two wins in his first Burkes Cycles Speed League outing of the season, but lost out to Jamie Thynne in the Sprinters’ Scratch. Sam Tillotson, also under 15, was third in the 8 lap Scratch and Sprinters’ Scratch and was part of Perry’s winning team in the Team Scratch.

Capital Cycles Dame Truth extended their lead in the Zeal Commercial Interiors Teams’ classification with the addition of George Jackson and Sam Tillotson to their roster.

Senior/ Under 19: Grant Perry (37 points)
Female: Lisa Hunkin (27 points)
Under 17: Sam Tillotson (21 points)
Under 15: George Jackson (17 points)
Under 13: Henry Tate (20 points)

Zeal Commercial Interiors Teams: Capital Cycles Dame Truth (71 points)

The next round of the Burkes Cycles Speed League takes place on Sunday November 16 at Wellington Velodrome, and features the first round of The Lanes Sprint Ace contest. Here’s the programme.

Results from round 2.
Burkes Cycles Speed League tables.
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Break through season for Wellington track cycling?

I’m hearing lots of chatter about roadies guys wanting to give track a proper go. Speed League is growing nicely, developing great talent and is well organised and communicated – this season should be a big one for the Wellington Velodrome.

October 10 2014


With an influx of quality riders targeting track cycling and fresh new sponsors, the Burkes Cycles Speed League, which begins on November 2 at the Wellington Velodrome in Hataitai, is preparing for its biggest season yet.

During the summer-long, weekly track cycling competition which is organised by the Port Nicholson Poneke (PNP) Cycling Club, riders can pick up points in races graded according to ability and at the end of the season, titles are handed out for the men’s, women’s, under 15 and under 17 Champions. The leaders in each category have the honour of wearing specially designed Champion System jerseys.

New for 2014/15 is a teams competition sponsored by Zeal Commercial Interiors, in which the three highest scoring riders in each team have their points combined. The men’s and women’s The Lanes Sprint Ace contests, where the quickest of the quick are pitted against each other in one-on-one sprints, will return.

In the Coffee Supreme sponsored senior men’s and women’s categories, defending champions Nick Warren (Miramar) and Ele Pepperell (Ngaio) will face tougher competition than ever, with a number of road-based cyclists deciding to target track cycling for the summer. Grant Perry (Miramar), fourth overall in 2013/14, will aim to capitalise on the the backing of the previously road-centric Rivet Racing team.

Wellington boasts a number of talented under 19 riders who have come through the ranks to be primary animators at Speed League races. Seatoun’s Zac Blakely (sixth overall in 2014/15), Petone’s Louis Higgisson (The Lanes Sprint Ace champion 2013/14) and Karori’s Jon Barnes (under 17 winner 2012/13) will be keen for more glory.

Pepperell will face a strong challenge leading up to Christmas from Karori’s Ione Johnson, who has represented New Zealand most recently at the Oceania Track Championships, and Holly Blakely (Seatoun) who was the under 17 champion in 2013/14.

However the next wave of juniors including multiple Wellington champion Jordan Lewis (Belmont) and 2013/14 under 15 Speed League victor and national medalist George Jackson (Island Bay) are already coming through and will be gunning for valuable Speed League points. As well as local hitters, top Levin-based junior Thomas Garbett has confirmed he will race on a regular basis.

The Burkes Cycles Speed League begins on November 2, 2014 at the Wellington Velodrome in Hataitai and takes place every Sunday from 4-6pm through to the end of March 2015 with a break over Christmas.

Teams Cycle Series a sign of the future?

Well done to Jorge Sandoval for the positive response he’s had for his new North Island Teams Series cycle races held in the Wairarapa. The first event was held last Saturday September 20 in grim conditions but was well attended.

In fact the series appears to have attracted a decent field despite the high entry fees – it costs $600 just to register a team, plus riders pays an entry fee for each race.

While Sandoval’s events can have a reputation of being a bit chaotic, he is trying something new it’s struck a chord. More racing on the calendar is a positive thing but the impact the series will have on local club events is yet to be seen.

The concern is that local clubs and races become irrelevant, while high-cost, professionally organised events become the future. Quite why riders are drawn to paying big bucks to do effectively the same thing as a five dollar club event is something volunteer organisers, such as myself, need to figure out.

Low key club events are still the backbone of the sport in New Zealand but we have to innovate or disappear from the cycling calendar.