February 10, 2013 (Mexico City, MEX) – Two Canadian sprinters broke the 10-second barrier in the 200m qualifying round at the 2013 UCI Pan American Track Cycling Championships in Mexico City on Saturday.
Joseph Veloce of Fonhtill, ON, who raced for Canada at the 2012 Olympic Games, qualified third-fastest with a time of 9.802 seconds, while Hugo Barrette of Cap-aux-Meules, QC was fourth in 9.864. The third Canadian sprinter, Stéphane Cossette of Chicoutimi, QC, was 15th in 10.118 despite suffering from illness.
“We know that the track here is very fast, but it’s remarkable to see these young sprinters posting such strong times,” said sprint coach Yannick Morin. “It’s very promising for the future.”
All three riders won their opening round matchups to move to the 1/8 final, where Veloce and Barrette both advanced to the quarter final.
Veloce beat Flavio Wagner of Brazil to move up to Sunday’s semifinal. Veloce is the sole Canadian sprinter advancing to the semi-finals, which are held Sunday.
Barrette, meanwhile, lost to Leandro Hernand Bottasso of Argentina in three rides, but went on to win the 5-8 final with a strong ride from the front to take the fifth spot.
Cossette lost his race and was relegated to the repêchage, where he finished second to end his tournament.
Also racing Saturday was Alison Beveridge in the women’s omnium. A bout of illness in the morning left her below par in the flying lap and the points race, however she bounced back in the afternoon to finish third in the elimination race in the evening.
Rémi Pelletier-Roy was also scheduled to race, in the men’s omnium, but was forced to withdraw due to illness.
Racing wraps up Sunday with the final three events in the women’s omnium, the men’s sprint semifinals and finals, and the women’s points race, which will feature Canadians Kirstly Lay and Candice Vermeulen.