Girls rule fast lane

PETALING JAYA: Nur Aisyah Mohd Zubir and Nurul Izzah Izzati (pic) stole the limelight with breakthrough performances to close the National Track Cycling Championships on a high note.

Nur Aisyah, fresh from winning three medals at the Hanoi SEA Games, continued with her good form by romping to a national record in the 3km individual pursuit at the National Velodrome in Nilai yesterday.

The 24-year-old from Terengganu clocked 3:47.488 to erase the previous record of 3:49.681 set by fellow SEA Games teammate Jupha Somnet.

Perlis-born Jupha, who did not compete this week, set the mark at the Track World Cup in Hong Kong in 2016.

Nur Qadrina Emylia settled for silver with 3:54.325 ahead of Pan Phi Kun, who took bronze for Kedah in 3:58.782.

Nur Aisyah will be pleased with her first individual pursuit title.

“I didn’t expect a fast time because I was feeling a bit fatigued after last week’s SEA Games.

“Maybe I still have the momentum and pace to go under three minutes and 50 seconds because the training intensity was good leading to the Games,” said Nur Aisyah who can expect a call-up for the Asian Track Cycling Championships in New Delhi from June 18-22.

In Hanoi, Nur Aisyah bagged an impressive silver in the individual road race behind Vietnam’s two-time Asian champion Nguyen Thi That.

Nur Aisyah also won silver in the road race team event and bronze in the criterium.

Meanwhile, young Kedah cyclist Nurul dashed national elite Anis Amira Rosidi’s hopes of a triple crown for Perlis.

The 18-year-old beat her more experienced opponent in the individual sprint by winning both race 1 and 2.

Selangor’s Yong An Yii claimed bronze after downing Penang’s Nurul Aliana Syafika in the third place playoff, which went to a deciding race.

Nurul, who was only called up to the national back-up track squad at the start of the year, admitted she felt nervous going up against her senior.

Anis, 24, has been part of the squad over the past few years and was based in Melbourne prior to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I felt quite nervous because she (Anis) is also part of the national squad and is older. She was also faster than me in the qualifying round.

“I didn’t expect to win the gold, my target was just to do the best that I could.

“I feel very happy as this is the biggest win of my career,” said Nurul, who is from Sungai Petani.

Anis, however, rebounded to win the 500m time trial with 35.220 ahead of Nurul (35.998).

It was Anis’ second gold as she had won the keirin on Saturday.

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