October 06, 2016 (Aguascalientes, Mexico) – Canada has had a strong start to the 2016 Pan Am Track Championships, in Aguascalientes, Mexico, winning three medals on Wednesday, the opening day of competition, and setting a new Canadian record. The Pan Am Championships are the continental championships, and provide valuable points for obtaining starting positions at the world championships.
Women's Individual Pursuit podium (l-r) Mejías 2nd, Caitin 1st, Glaesser 3rd © courtesy of Cycling Canada
In the Women’s Individual Pursuit, two-time Olympic bronze medalist Jasmin Glaesser (Coquitlam, BC) finished third, with a time of three minutes and 30.942 seconds. Kelly Catlin of the United States won the gold medal, 6.925 seconds ahead of Glaesser. Ariane Bonhomme (Gatineau, QC) was seventh.
Men's Team Sprint podium (l-r) Argentina 2nd, Colombia 1st, Canada 3rd © courtesy of Cycling Canada
Canada sent a development squad for the Men’s sprint events, and they began the Championships with a third place finish in the Team Sprint, with a time of 44.299 seconds. The Canadian team consisted of Junior world champion Stefan Ritter (Edmonton, AB), Joel Archambault (Sainte-Christine, QC) and Patrice Pivin (Windsor, QC). Colombia won with a time of 42.772 seconds.
Men's Team Pursuit podium (l-r) Canada 2nd, Colombia 1st, Chile 3rd © courtesy of Cycling Canada
Canada’s third medal of the day went to the Men’s Team Pursuit squad, consisting of Aidan Caves (Vancouver, BC), Adam Jamieson (Barrie, ON), Jay Lamoureux (Victoria, BC) and Ed Veal (Queensville, ON). The team rode the 4000 metre final against Colombia, and finished with a time of three minutes and 59.931 seconds, a new Canadian record. Colombia’s time of 3:55.362 was a Pan Am Championship record.
“It feels good to finally get [the time] we’ve been trying to get all year, which is a sub-4 minute ride,” said Caves. “Now that we have broken that barrier, we’ll have to see how far we can go. Our next step will be to repeat it.”
Men's Team Pursuit - Team Canada (l-r) Jamieson, Lamoureux, Caves and Veal © courtesy of Cycling Canada
“We broke the record in qualifying,” said Veal, “so we knew we could do it again. Everything was going perfectly and all signs said that we could do it. We knew it would be very difficult to beat the Colombians, so our major goal was to break four minutes. We had a real committed group, which made it happen.”
In other competitions, Evan Burtnik (Edmonton, AB) finished fifth in the Men’s Scratch Race.
The Pan Am Championships continue through Sunday.