Sussex schoolgirl puts Olympic Velodrome through its paces

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BARNHAM schoolgirl Megan Lewis has returned from a successful experience which saw her selected to represent the south east at the Sainsbury’s UK 2012 School Games.

Lewis, 14, attends St Philip Howard Catholic High School and trains with Reading-based Palmer Park Velo Cycling Club.

The games were a multi-sport event for the UK’s elite young athletes and were held in the Olympic Park.

The competition aimed to mirror the Olympic and Paralympic Games, complete with opening and closing ceremonies, featuring around 1,800 of the nation’s finest young sports stars.

Lewis, who lives in Rustington, competed in three days of tough competition – two at Redbridge Cycling Centre and one at the Olympic Velodrome and the south east team picked up two gold medals and several other high places. On day one in the crit eliminator, the riders raced over a four-lap 500m course with tight technical bends and a steep climb and bend towards the finish line.

There was also a 40k race, in which Lewis started well but was then plagued by punctures and mechanical problems.

The next day, the south east team set the early pace in the team time trial, before finishing in fifth place.

Lewis was in action at the Olympic Velodrome the next day and a polished performance saw her finish runner-up in the minor final.

She then teamed up with 15-year-old Abigail van Twisk and the pair finished fifth.

She is now looking forward to the road and track season and is hoping to represent the south east at the inter-regional track competition in September.

Also ahead is the chance to ride in the Revolutions Series at the Manchester Velodrome.