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PEDALS ONTO PODIUM – Ava Irving-Staley (left) pedalled to a third-place finish in the U-15 girls division during the time trial at the B.C. Road Cycling Championships over July 29-30 in Vancouver. Photo by TRENA IRVING

Ava Irving-Staley has breakout performances at major cycling competitions

A whirlwind trip to the West Coast yielded strong results for young U Kon Echelon cyclists.

By Marissa Tiel on August 11, 2017

A whirlwind trip to the West Coast yielded strong results for young U Kon Echelon cyclists.

Ava Irving-Staley led the team with two podiums over two weekends of racing.

She battled to third place at the B.C. Provincial Youth Time Trial Championship on the Lower Mainland and followed that up with another bronze at the Northwest Juniors Stage Race time trial on Aug. 5 in Elma, WA.

“I was very surprised when I got third,” she said of her first podium. “It felt pretty good. It was fun.”

The 13-year-old is racing her first year in the U15 age division.

She raced at B.C. provincials last year when they were held in Penticton and placed second overall in the younger age division.

She and teammates Clayton Chapman, 13, and her younger brother, Johna, nine, previewed the course before competing on it.

She told herself, “I’m just going to try my best and see.”

In time trials, cyclists race against the clock, starting individually on the course.

Irving-Staley averaged 30.17 km/h to finish third on the 12K course. She was only 40 seconds off of the first-place rider.

Chapman was 10th in the U15 men’s division and Johna was eighth in the U13 men’s division.

It was Irving-Staley’s third time on the time trial course in Elma and she knew exactly what to expect.

There was a tailwind going out and a headwind coming back. She finished the 9.6K course in 16:07.24 to place third, 25 seconds back from the leader.

“I kind of like time trials,” she said. “You’re just racing yourself. ... It’s icing on the cake if you get on the podium.”

In the junior C boys division, Chapman was 15th, while in the junior D boys division Johna was 16th.

The next race for U Kon Echelon athletes will be the Tour de Juneau Aug. 17-20.

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