Baranoski, Valente Win Keirin Cup
Matt Baranosk did it again. The Perkasie native left Valley Preferred Cycling Center tonight with a repeat victory in the highly-coveted Keirin Cup. Meanwhile, San Diego’s Jennifer Valente etched her name on the trophy for the first time.
The men’s Keirin Final was all Baranoski. He immediately took the first spot behind the motor, then held off an early charge by national keirin champ Giddeon Massie and a late effort by teammate Andy Lakatosh to grab the victory.
“My strategy was what everybody wants to do – to get to the front and stay out of the crap in the back,” said Baranoski. “This race was a little different because there was a lot of, for lack of a better term, non-Keirin riders. There were a lot of endurance guys and not necessarily sprinters. I knew how it was going to be towards the back, so the closer I got to the front the better off I was going to be.”
With the exception of a real challenge from teammate Lakatosh, most of the keirin final action took place behind Baranoski.
“The thing that was really a surprise is when Giddeon went with 500 meters to go,” added Baranoski. “But I stood on it and got on top of the gear. I was able to hold it for a lap and a half.”
Valente, a junior rider from the West Coast, arrived in T-Town a few weeks ago to compete in the USA Cycling Juniors Track National Championships and stayed in town just for the Keirin Cup.
“I was looking forward to this event,” said Valente. “This was something that’s been on my calendar. This was an extremely difficult field with the Kiwis in town, and Dana Feiss plus the locals [Colleen] Gulick and Mary [Costelloe]. It’s definitely hard racing. It’s some of the best preparation I can get before Junior Worlds.”
After winning six Gold Medals at Junior Nationals, Valente now has her sights set on Junior Worlds next month in New Zealand. She’s already a reigning Junior World Champion in the Scratch Race. T-Town has been key to her preparation, but she’s heading back west to continue her training.
“I’ll be training on the indoor track in L.A. which is very similar to the New Zealand track, or more similar to it than this track,” added Valente. “It’ll definitely help. Besides that, focusing on more on sprint training specifically. I’ve been doing a lot of endurance stuff here.”
Long term, though, Valente expects she’ll return for some more racing in T-Town.
“I have every intention of being back here racing,” said Valente. “I love it here.”
Pro Men’s Racing: Baranoski and New Zealand’s Dylan Kennett had the spotlight most of the night. Baranoski added a victory in the 3km Scratch Race. Kennett took wins in the Super Sprint Elimination and the 35 Lap Points Race. Kennett also teamed with fellow Kiwi Hayden McCormick to win the 50 Lap Madison.
Pro Women’s Racing: In addition to the Keirin win, Valente took the victory in the 10 Lap Scratch. New Zealand’s Sophie Williamson won the 25 Lap Points Race, while Kiwi Racquel Sheath won the Elimination.
Next Event: The World Series of Bicycling returns Friday, August 3, with Tandemonium! Racing starts at 7:30. Tickets start at just $5.00 and kids 12 and under are free.
Photo by Anthony Skorochod of Cycling Captured
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