TT CYCLIST, Nicholas Paul, finished eighth in the Men’s Sprint event at the International Cycling Union (UCI) Tissot Track Cycling World Cup which concluded in Cambridge, New Zealand, on Saturday.
Paul’s performance saw him earn 275 points towards his Olympic qualification campaign following two weeks of World Cup competition in Hong Kong, China, last week and this weekend’s Cambridge leg.
In his quarter-final heat against Poland’s Mateusz Rudyk, Paul lost in straight rides but held on to eighth place overall. Prior to his exit, the national rider qualified with the ninth fastest time (9.772 seconds) in heat 32 of 33 of the men’s sprint qualification round.
He then disposed of Taiwan’s Hsing Hsieh Nien in heat five of 12 to advance to the next round. Here, Paul encountered a familiar face, Suriname’s Jair Tjon En Fa, and continued in good stride to another smooth victory before bowing out in the following quarter-final stage.
The segment of the 2019 World Cup saw TT Men’s Team Sprint just miss out on capturing TT’s first-ever World Cup medal after going down to hosts New Zealand in the bronze medal ride-off on Friday. Additionally, Kwesi Browne placed ninth in the Men’s Keirin and also bagged several important Olympic qualifier points.
The team, led by veteran coach and two-time American Olympic medallist, Erin Hartwell, now shifts its focus on the final World Cup for this year which pedals off at the Anna Meares Velodrome in Brisbane, Australia, on Friday. The four-man contingent also includes double-Olympian Njisane Phillip and Keron Bramble.
Following their final performance, Hartwell will decide if the team should contest the final World Cup Series event in Milton, Canada, on January 24-26 as they amplify preparations ahead of the 2020 UCI Track Cycling World Championships (February 26 – March 1) in Berlin, Germany.