Track Cycling World Championships: Great Britain women win team pursuit gold
Great Britain's women's team pursuit quartet won gold at the Track Cycling World Championships.
By Matt Westby
Last Updated: 28/02/14 8:00pm
Laura Trott, Joanna Rowsell, Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald were pushed all the way by their underdog opponents, but eventually prevailed by 1.3 seconds in a time of 4min 23.407sec.
Canada stormed into an early lead of more than a second and although they lost one of their four riders early, it wasn't until 500m to go that Britain finally edged ahead.
The victory still wasn't sealed, though, because on the final lap an exhausted Barker pulled aside and almost veered into Trott, who had to take evasive action and then sprint to the finish line after becoming distanced from Rowsell and Archibald. Fortunately for Britain, Canada were badly tiring by now and couldn't capitalise.
Trott said afterwards: "It was pretty hard to be honest. We tried to pace it well. For the first 2km we tried to keep it steady. We could see that we were down and what we had to do. It was a good ride. It came together at the end so we are happy."
The result means Trott is now a five-time world champion, while Archibald collects her first rainbow jersey less than four months after joining the British Cycling programme full time.
It was Britain's only medal of the second day of championships after Jason Kenny finished fifth in the men's keirin final following a collision with Germany's Maximilian Levy on the last lap.
With the pair riding side by side, Levy swerved into Kenny and although the Briton was able to stay upright, he was pushed to the outside of the track and his chances of challenging for a place on the podium were effectively extinguished.
France's Francois Pervis claimed the gold, narrowly beating Colombian home favourite Fabian Puerta into silver and the Netherlands' Matthijs Buchli into bronze.
In the women's 500m time trial, Britain's Becky James and Victoria Williamson both missed out on medals in a fiercely contested competition.
James finished seventh, despite beating her bronze medal-winning time from last year's world championships with a personal-best mark of 34.021, while Williamson was tenth.
Germany's Miriam Welte won her second gold medal of the championships after edging out Australian legend Anna Meares by one tenth of a second in a time of 33.451 seconds. Russia's Anastasia Voinova claimed bronze.
Irvine claims silver
James said afterwards: "There were some incredible rides out there today. I didn't expect to see myself on the podium. I hoped to be, but I'm happy."
Ireland's Martyn Irvine produced a courageous performance to claim silver in the men's 15km scratch race.
The 28-year-old, who won gold in the same event last year, launched a counter-attack with 20 of the 60 laps remaining after Hong Kong's King Lok Cheung and Russia's Ivan Kovalev had earlier broken away and successfully lapped the field.
A visibly tiring Irvine took 13 laps to catch the peloton and gain a lap himself, but he recovered sufficiently enough to overtake Cheung in the closing stages to secure second place behind Kovalev, who was too far ahead in the bunch to be caught. Britain's Jon Dibben finished 13th.
Ireland missed out on a second medal of the day when 19-year-old Ryan Mullen was edged out by New Zealand's Marc Ryan is a closely fought bronze-medal final in the men's individual pursuit. Australia's Alexander Edmondson overcame Switzerland's Stefan Kueng to claim gold.