Maggie Coles-Lyster brought home the hardware from the 2014 Canadian National Track Championships last weekend in Burnaby, with four gold, one silver and bronze medal.
In only her second time competing in a Canadian National cycling competition, the 15-year-old bike racer from Maple Ridge proved she is the top junior female track racer in the country.
The event was originally slated to be held at a new velodrome in Milton, Ontario, being built for the 2015 Pan American Games. But with delays in construction, the junior races were moved to the Burnaby Velodrome, where Coles-Lyster regularly trains. This shift in event location prompted the young cyclist to work even harder to accomplish her goal of being Canadian Champion.
She was training and racing at the Burnaby track five days a week leading into the nationals.
The U17 Women’s category, in which Coles-Lyster competes, was comprised of 18 of Canada’s top young riders. With cyclists from Quebec, Ontario and Alberta, this was the biggest field of U-17 women ever to compete at a National Track Championships.
“I was super excited to be able to race against such a strong group of girl’s my age,” said Coles-Lyster. “I usually have to race against adult women or men. This motivated me even more to win my races.”
Being well prepared and ready to race, Coles-Lyster brought her aggressive, attack-style bike racing tactics to the competition. She won national titles in the prestigious omnium (top rider over five events), 500m time trial, sprint tournament and the team sprint. She also took silver in individual pursuit and bronze in team pursuit.
In October, she won bronze at the National Cyclocross Championships in Winnipeg, Man.
Coles-Lyster will race in the Burnaby Four-Day Track Event on Dec. 26-30. With her success, she has been invited to compete in the Pro Women class, which includes some of North America’s top Women track cyclists.