Briton John new champion of Independence Three-Stage Cycling
- Jamual John wins third stage
This weekend the Independence Three-Stage Cycling Road Race returned for the first time since 2016, and Briton John, who rode as a Junior at that event, has emerged as the winner of this year’s showpiece, which concluded at Thirst Park, Georgetown, on Sunday.
The We Stand United Cycle Club rider won the first stage, placed fourth in the second stage and secured second in the third, all of which were enough for him to secure the overall title.
Jamual John, who was Briton’s closest challenger for the overall title, won the third stage, which started from Kara Kara on the Linden/Soesdyke Highway and ended at Thirst Park, Georgetown, covering a distance of just over 62 miles.
The 21-year-old Briton won the first stage from Corriverton to New Amsterdam (45 miles) on Saturday morning in a time of 1:44:37s, followed by Adealie Hodge (1:44:44s), Paul De Nobrega (1:44:47s), Jamual John (1:44:49s), Christopher Griffith (1:45:04s), Mario Washington (1:45:08s), Curtis Dey (1:45:08s).
The 07:30h start was greeted by overcast conditions on the Upper Corentyne corridor and in some parts very muddy roadway, which meant the riders had to add further caution to plans.
Briton’s triumph was a result of classic teamwork as clubmate Horace Burrowes drew a pack out early and allowed Briton to conserve, while the likes of seasoned campaigner Raynauth Jeffrey attacked in the early stages along with Hodge.
From the Berbice High School area, Briton made his move and quickly reeled in all ahead of him to erase the anticipation of a possible photo-finish with Hodge.
The second stage (Rosignol to Carifesta Avenue – 58 miles), which started at 14:00h on Saturday as well, was one by Jeffrey in a close battle with Jamual, who had suffered a flat during the race.
DeNobrega (third), Briton (fourth) and Alex Mendes (fifth) rounded off the top five, but it still gave Briton a 14-second lead heading into the third stage.
There was also a racing accident that required some of the cyclists to be treated for injuries, but none were life-threatening.
Among those in the accident were Michael Anthony, Marcus Kieler, Sybourne Fernandes and Junior Niles.
The event started with 48 riders, but that number was significantly reduced after the two stages as the riders underwent the toughest test of the three-stage race.
With the lead Briton had on his competitors, it would have been difficult task to stop him from winning the overall title once he kept close to the winner.
From the hill at Splashmins Resort, the two Johns distanced themselves from the peloton and with their speed it was difficult for anyone to lay chase.
Given that the two were in contention for the overall title, they had various tit for tats battles, gauging each other to see when best to make a move.
Whenever Jamual looked to make a dash, Briton kept close. It was until around Rahaman’s Park, that Jamaul went full throttle to win the stage, but it was still not enough to stop Briton from overall success.
Briton won $70,000, while Jamual, who came second overall won $60,000. The other top six finishers received $50,000, $40,000, $35,000 and $25,000 respectively.
The Females and Juniors were not required to ride the third stage and their championship was calculated based on the positions of the first and second stages.
Junior David Hicks of We Stand United Cycle Club won the overall prize of $50,000 ahead of the first stage winner, Mario Washington, who got $35,000.
Aaron Newton, also of We Stand United Cycle Club, placed third to pocket $25,000 and 13-year-old Alex Leung came fourth.
Linden’s Suzanna Hamilton was the top female and won $50,000; she was followed by Shenika Teixeira and 13-year-old debutant Aneisha Crandon, who were awarded $35,000 and $25,000 respectively.
The next event by the Guyana Cycling Federation is the National Cycling Championships, which will start on Saturday (May 22) with the time trials followed by the Road Race on Sunday.