GB women claim team pursuit gold at Track World Cup in Manchester

GB women claim team pursuit gold at Track World Cup in Manchester
By Sportsbeat

12/11/2017 at 18:56Updated

Great Britain finished their home TISSOT UCI Track World Cup on a high as the women's team pursuit quartet reigned supreme in Manchester.

That meant the home nation finished the event with three gold medals - a tally matched on her own by the remarkable German sprinter Kristina Vogel, who added individual sprint victory on the final day to her two previous successes this weekend.

The frenetic men's Madison brought a close to the event with a win for Danes Niklas Larsen and Casper von Folsach, while Australia's Matthew Glaetzer had a record-setting day on his way to winning the kilometre time trial and Matthijs Buchli took gold in the keirin.

In the end, Germany topped the Manchester medal table with four gold medals in total, while Britain were second with three golds among five medals.

Imperious Vogel

The women's sprint final was set up after Kristina Vogel eased past the Netherlands' Shanne Braspennincx in straight rides and Laurine van Riessen despatched Russia's Anastasiia Voinova, in the same method.

Vogel then again showed her class as she outpaced her opponent in the final, winning in straight rides to rack up a third gold medal of the weekend, and sixth from the opening two rounds of the TISSOT UCI Track World Cup.

"I'm quite happy, but quite tired," said the nine-time world champion.

"This was the third big event in a month with the Europeans and two World Cups, but I'm very happy.

"The mental side is hard, because you know you are the fastest but the other riders get to watch your previous race.

"You have to be good in your head and sometimes that is more important than the race." The bronze medal eventually went to Voinova, as the Russian beat Braspennincx in the deciding third ride.

Brilliant Brits

With the British team pursuit having got through to the gold medal ride earlier in the day without the rested Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald, the Madison winning duo returned to set a blistering time and win their second golds of the weekend.

Joining Neah Evans and Emily Nelson, the quartet beat European champions Italy in the final, clocking 4:16.803 to win by almost five seconds, with Japan claiming bronze.

"I don't think we expected to go that fast, so to go that fast in front of a home crowd is really special and it made such a difference to have everyone cheering you on," said Nelson, who rode all three rounds for Great Britain.

"They weren't comfortable races at all, I think that obviously riding all three rounds is hard but it worked out well, resting Katie and Elinor after their Madison.

"We just had to go out there and do our best ride, and we did that."

Record-setting Glaetzer

Glaetzer had opened the day with the fastest ever kilometre time trial at sea level, clocking 59.970s.

Scot Callum Skinner qualified second fastest for 100% ME, but while Glaetzer could back his ride up in the final, winning with an effort of 1:00.081, Skinner settled for third as Germany's Eric Engler took silver.

But the day belonged to Glaetzer and he was understandably chuffed with his efforts. "I'm stoked with the first kilo ride," said the 25-year-old.

"When I crossed the line I heard a nine. I was just hoping it was 59, not 1:09. So I looked up at the clock and thought ‘yes, I've finally done it'.

"It's been a goal of mine for a while and I was surprised that I got it tonight, actually.

"It's awesome. There are legends of the sport that have done the event, like Sir Chris Hoy, that I've looked up to.

"In my first World Championships I went up against him in the sprint individually. He's been a benchmark in the sport for such a long time, so for me now to try the event and have so much success, is really special."

Buchli bounces back

Dutchman Buchli crashed at high speed in the individual sprint semi-finals on Saturday, but showed no ill effects on the final day in Manchester as he took the keirin title ahead of Ukraine's Andrii Vynokurov.

The Beat Cycle Club rider won by just 0.011s as Spain's Juan Peralta picked up the bronze in an event that saw world champion Azizul Awang fail to make the final.

Danes bring the curtain down

The day's closing event saw young Danish pair Larsen and Pedersen steal a victory in the closing moments with a last-gasp lap.

Trailing the Polish leaders by 11 points with less than 20 laps to go, the pair attacked with French world champions Morgan Kneisky and Benjamin Thomas, eventually making the junction just in time for the final sprint.

The two teams finished level on points, but with the Danes finishing higher than their rivals in the final sprint, it was them who took the win.

"When the Polish guys took a lap, we knew if we were going to get the victory, we would have to take a lap as well," said von Folsach.

"It was just on our limits, and theirs as well, but I saw Niklas when the Poles were going quite slow and I knew it was now or never."

Larsen added: "I looked back when I made my last change and then went full gas.

"I decided to see what it would be after the last sprint because it was very close. We just had to give it our all."

Sportsbeat 2017

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