HOME-TOWN hero Cameron Meyer, with WA compatriot Sarah Kent and fellow world champion Michael Friedberg, will take on the world in tonight’s 2012 Perth International Track Cycling Grand Prix.
A blazing international field of national, European and world champion track cyclists will descend on the Midvale SpeedDome for the 12th running of the classic.
In what promises to be the best cycling race to be held in Perth, the crack field includes riders from Japan, the US, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, the Philippines, Germany and Switzerland in their final lead-up event to the world championships, in Melbourne, from April 4 to 8.
Australia is currently the No. 1 nation in the world in track cycling and defending their home patch will be two world champions – Helena Valley’s Cameron Meyer and Sarah Kent, from Duncraig.
Meyer, the reigning national and world track madison champion and winner of the recent prestigious Berlin Six Day Race, is eager to compete in the event.
“The Perth Grand Prix will be my final hit-out before defending my world title in Melbourne,” he said.
“I have my sights set on the Grand Prix double – the points and scratch races – and I have the form to do it,” he said.
World champion and world record- holder Sarah Kent is thrilled to be able to compete at home.
“Racing in front of your home crowd in an event of this magnitude is magnificent. It simply doesn’t get any better than this,” she said.
The two Perth locals will be joined by 22-year-old world omnium champion Michael Friedberg in a bid to stave off a stellar international field.
One of the internationals in a strong Swiss line-up includes national champion Loic Perizzolo, who has been enjoying some downtime in Perth in the lead-up to the race.
“I was given permission by the Swiss Federation to come to Perth early to prepare for the grand prix and the Melbourne world championships,” he said.
“It was the best decision I could have made. I am in the best form of my life and have a suntan my countrymen would kill for,” he said. Perizzolo will be aiming to improve his current world ranking of No.3 in the men’s madison in Melbourne
Other confirmed starters include European champion Silvan Dillier, currently ranked world No.1 in the madison, track world cup winner Charlotte Becker (Germany), European and national champion Evegenya Romanyuta (Russia), currently ranked world No.3 in the omnium, and Asian champion Kazunari Watanabe (Japan).