About Sara

Sara Byers is a Elite Canadian Provincial and National Champion in road and track cycling. Based in Niagara and racing with
Kallisto-FCV p/b Toyo Tires (Forest City Velodrome) and Canada's National Sprint Team, upcoming goals include
2015 Pan Am Championships, Track World Cup and Rio 2016 Olympics.

Monday, 6 August 2012

London (Ontario) 2012 - Provincial Track Championship

This weekend, August 3-4, Ontario Track Provincial Championships were held at Forest City Velodrome in London, Ontario hosted by the FCV track community and Ontario Cycling Association. Thank you FCV & OCA for running a tight ship and creating an amazing event and race environment!

Track Provincials was a scheduled goal event in which I aimed to reach the podium and also gain important race experience coming from a road racing background (..er, mountain bike?). I'm extremely pleased and thankful, with the support of many, to have accomplished both objectives!

Ontario Sprint Champ
Candice Vermeulen, Sara Byers, Sarah Rasmussen

 Ontario Provincial Track Championship Results
1st   Sprint
2nd   500 Metre
2nd   Scratch Race
3rd   2000 Metre
3rd   60 Lap Points Race

Thank you elite ladies for bringing your A game and creating one of the most welcoming and professional race environments I've enjoyed.

Although I loved every race, the Sprint event was a highlight. Timing of my effort in the Flying Lap qualifier wasn't great, but the result was passable. The heats progressed and... with a few shouts from coach on the sideline mid sprint and quick words between heats.. each effort felt transcendent and I didn't lose one. Highlight being not so much the medal won, but the moment when a concept clicked, and there was a marked progression. "Click!"  I think having to successfully complete numerous challenges for a single medal is pretty cool, and call me a newbie but it's really neat that the body can do the repeated efforts that track racing demands.

(Insert techy gargon here: Flying Lap - You ride onto the track and basically have two laps to get positioned and up to speed before the third lap which is timed. Flying Lap results determine who you are up against in Sprint Heats which narrow the field down to Sprint Finals which then decide the medal winners. A Sprint is from a standing start, a kind volunteer holds you and bike up, and is to be completed within five laps. A heat or final is a set of three sprints against the same person and the winner achieves the best two out of three finishes. Win the first two sprints and you don't have to do the third. Isn't that good motivation in the drenching heat!? I will take motivation from anything) 

Wonder what's it like to race the track?

If you are not familiar with this discipline of cycling, check it out. The frequent claim of Ontario track riders is, "If you can ride the London track, you can ride anywhere!", due to it's tiny circumference and steeply banked walls.. only to be outdone, I'm told, by the Red Bull's world's smallest track!

Adding to the excitement of this year's Provincials is its timing, coinciding with the same Olympic event! Both in a city called London!!

Olympic or World's size track:

Forest City Velodrome in London, Ontario: