Trinidad and Tobago cyclists will be returning home from Cali after what could only be called a success after winning 4 gold medals at the UCI Track Cycling Nations Cup in Cali, Colombia.
Headlining the team was 22 year old Olympian, Nicholas Paul, winning three gold medals in the Men’s Kilometre Time Trial, Keirin and Sprint. Akil Campbell overcame a spill on track to come back and still win the Men’s Elimination race. Quincy Alexander and Keron Bramble also competed in the Men’s Keirin and Sprint respectively.
Paul got off to a flying start in the Men’s Kilo on Friday, blistering the qualifying session with a 59.38, one of two riders to clock a sub-60 time. The Fastest Man On Two Wheels follows that up by being the only rider to clock sub-60 in the Final with a 59.99 to win the Gold. Even the commentators called it after almost a lap!
Akil Campbell closed off Friday session in the Men’s Elimination Race where Campbell actually crashed going into turn one at one point during the race. He was able to continue the race and still managed to finish 1st! He became Trinidad and Tobago’s first ever endurance medalist in track cycling.
Saturday saw Paul and Keron Bramble feature in the Men’s Keirin. Bramble would finish 3rd in his heat and then 3rd in the repechage, which would mean an early exit for him. Paul went on to win all three rounds to see him win his 2nd gold medal of the Championships. He had to avoid a crash in the 2nd round and barely edge home favorite Kevin Santiago Quintero Chavarro for the win.
On Sunday, Akil Campbell took part in the Men’s Omnium while Quincy Alexander got his turn to take to the track with Paul in the Men’s Sprint. Paul was fastest in qualifying with a 9.66, qualifying for the 1/8 finals and setting the tone early. Quincy Alexander qualified 18th with a 10.45 and qualified for the 1/16 finals. Alexander wouldn’t go further than that however, as he was nipped at the line by India’s Esow Esow; he would finish 18th overall.
Nicholas Paul however won all of his races on his way to his third gold medal of the tournament, beating hometown favorite Kevin Santiago Quntero Chavarro. He had a bit of a scare in the Final when he made contact with Chavarro’s back wheel and fell off, but when they restarted the race, there was no stopping him.
In the Omnium, Akil Campbell finished 7th overall with a total of 85 points. His highlight was once again in the Elimination race where he would finish 2nd this time and where he made up his majority of the points. He would finish 8th in the Scratch Race, 14th in the Tempo Race and 7th in the Points Race.
Trinidad and Tobago’s 4 gold would be good for 2nd in the Medal rankings, taking home the most gold medals in the men’s events.
All images and videos are courtesy UCI Track Nations Cup Cali Facebook Live Stream, Tissot Track TV Live Stream and Union Cycliste Internationale Facebook page