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Elinor Barker wins scratch race gold at Track Cycling World Championships

Great Britain's Elinor Barker wins gold in the women's scratch race at the Track Cycling World Championships in Pruszkow, Poland.
Image: Elinor Barker wins the first medal for Great Britain at the Track Cycling World Championships in Pruszkow, Poland

Great Britain's Elinor Barker has won gold in the women's scratch race at the Track Cycling World Championships in Pruszkow, Poland.

The 24-year-old launched her attack with two laps of the 40 remaining and, after a massive crash wiped out several riders behind, held off Holland's Kirsten Wild to take the rainbow jersey.

It is a fourth world title for Barker, and first in this event.

"That was always my plan," Barker said of the late surge. "I wanted to stay out of the carnage. It's always a bit sketchy. It's the first race of the week and everyone's fresh, everyone wants a sprint but no-one wants to take it on.

"I wanted to stay out of the way a little bit. For safety but also to save the legs because I've got the team pursuit tomorrow and this was always the secondary event."

Great Britain's Elinor Barker wins gold in the women's scratch race at the Track Cycling World Championships in Pruszkow, Poland.
Image: Barker won silver in the World Championships scratch race in 2017

The 36-year-old Wild, a two-time scratch race world champion, had to settle for silver with Jolien D'Hoore of Belgium third.

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Earlier in the day, Barker joined Katie Archibald, Laura Kenny and Ellie Dickinson to set the second-fastest time in qualifying for the team pursuit, stopping the clock at 4 minutes 15.618 seconds, leaving them 0.7 seconds behind Australia's pace.

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