Riders offered colorful descriptions for Wednesday’s Individual Time Trials at Bill Armstrong Stadium. Despite the event’s grueling nature, Wing It senior Kristi Hewitt set a new track record and the Cutters’ Eric Young posted the fastest men’s time since 2006.
Hewitt put in a four-lap time of 2:34.00, breaking the 2:34.27 mark set by Teter’s Sarah Reike in 2007. Hewitt’s time topped the leaderboard by more than 5 seconds.
Second-place finisher Jennifer Balbach of Kappa Delta posted a time of 2:39.55
Hewitt did it with an arm injury she sustained during a spring break cycling accident.
“My goal wasn’t thinking about the competition,” Hewitt said. “I just wanted to improve my time from last year. I like to know that my training and my hard work pays off. I just pedaled and rode with my heart.”
Hewitt successfully defended her 2008 ITT title, beating her own time from last year by more than 2.5 seconds.
Gamma Phi Beta’s Sonja Arnesen took third place with a 2:39.86.
On the men’s side, Young posted a 2:18.25 time in one of the evening’s most competitive heats. Facing last year’s second-place finisher Nick Sovinski of Phi Delta Theta, Matt Neibler of Delta Tau Delta and Kenny Parks of Team Major Taylor, Young achieved his personal goal: to win.
“I was pretty surprised, actually,” Young said. “I was hoping to win today just because I got third last year. I started out really fast and just tried to hold on. The fourth lap was real hard, but fortunately it worked out all right.”
He barely beat out Parks, who posted a time of 2:20.10. Third place finisher Greg Maves of Delta Tau Delta posted a time of 2:22.20.
The individual time trials featured four riders in each corner of the track racing in a four-lap event. The basic strategy: ride as fast as you can.
Black Key Bulls sophomore Jordan Bailey said the event is one of the toughest of the spring racing series.
“Honest to God, coming through on the last straight, you’ve just got tunnel vision,” Bailey said. “The closer you get, the less you can see, because you’re giving it all you got.”
Young said the last lap felt the worst.
“The first three laps flew by in like two seconds,” he said, “but the fourth lap felt like it lasted forever.”
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