Whanganui High School's Jack Overweel only thought about getting on a track bike last October and less than six months later he is a national champion.

The 13-year-old cleaned up at the NZ Secondary Schools Track Cycling Championships at the Cambridge Velodrome this week, winning three individual discipline titles and with it the Overall Age Group championship for Under 14's.

One of a small contingent of four Whanganui representatives to attend the championships, having to compete against top cyclists from schools who regularly race and train indoors at Cambridge, Overweel caught everyone by surprise by winning the 500m Derby, the 2000m Scratch Race and the 2500m Points Race.

His interest in competitive cycling started at Whanganui Intermediate when the teacher in charge of cycling asked if he wanted to have a go, with the school arranging a bike for him.


Overweel had been getting into triathlon, but eventually settled on one discipline that's part of that sport.

He had success at the Road Taupo event, coming in the Top 5 for his age group in the 40km leg race.

Overweel received generous local support from the Bike Shed and now Velo Ronny's.
Of the other Whanganui cyclists to compete in Cambridge from Tuesday through to Thursday, Wanganui Collegiate's Kyle Hoskin was in the composite team that won the Team Pursuit for Under 17's.

His Composite team finished fourth in the Team Sprint, while individually Hoskin was third in the Points Race, third in the Keirin 'B' Final and ninth in the 4000m Scratch Race.

He finished 8th Overall in the Under 17 grade.

Collegiate's Finnergan Murphy entered the Under 16 grade and was fourth in the Points Race, while coming fifth in both the 3000m Scratch Race and Keirin, which was enough to finish 5th Overall for Under 16's.

Whanganui Girls College's Mia Williams entered the Under 14 Girls grade and came third in the 500m Derby, eighth in the 2000m Scratch Race and seventh in the Points Race.
She finished 6th Overall for the grade.