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UCI Track World Championships 2011 2011

Date range:
March 23-27, 2011

March 25, Women's Sprint:

Meares prevails in gold medal final

By:
Laura Weislo
Published:
March 26, 2011, 17:57 GMT,
Updated:
March 26, 2011, 23:44 GMT

Krupeckaite dispatched to silver, Pendleton nets bronze

Anna Meares (Australia) claims an emotional individual sprint world title over Simona Krupeckaitė (Lithuania)

Anna Meares (Australia) claims an emotional individual sprint world title over Simona Krupeckaitė (Lithuania)

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After ten years of trying, Australian Anna Meares finally claimed the elusive individual sprint world title to add to her three in the team sprint and her three world and one Olympic title in the 500m time trial.

Meares topped Lithuanian Simona Krupeckaite in two races in the gold medal final, while Great Britain's Victoria Pendleton dispatched the recently-crowned 500m world champion Olga Panarina (Belarus) to take the bronze.

Meares's seventh rainbow jersey is the sweetest by far since she's worked years to transform herself from a 500m specialist to the world's top match sprinter.

"In 10 years in the senior ranks, I've been a silver medalist, been a bronze medalist, been fourth, been not even in the picture on occasion. I've just worked so hard. I'm so proud of my coach and the team - they've stood behind me and backed me the whole way. We've worked on every little aspect we possibly could to make this happen tonight and it makes me feel good to make it happen."

In addition to all the hard work, Meares had to finally give up on the event in which she made her name, the 500, in order to make that final step, making her 2010 title her last. "It was a difficult decision I had to make. I made it after last year when I saw the two finalists in the individual sprint didn't ride the 500, and the two who did were racing for bronze.

"I can't give away a full day of warm up, warm down and competition to riders like Vicky Pendleton and Shuang Guo."

Focused and sharp for the individual sprint, the sacrifice paid off in spades with an emotional first world title in the event. Meares clearly enjoying the experience didn't want to talk about the next Olympic Games just yet. "I'm going to give myself a chance to take this in. I've never done it before. I don't want to just take this off and set it aside just yet. I want to let it soak in."

Meares faced the daunting challenge of meeting five-time sprint world champion and Olympic champion Victoria Pendleton not in the final, where predictions might have placed them, but in the semi-final round.

The Australian had to pull out all the stops to make it into the gold medal round. "I looked at that race as if it was my final," said Meares. "I tried to bring out everything possible to beat her (Pendleton).

Meares looked dominant in the first race of the semifinal round, coming over Pendleton out of turn two and then powering ahead to the line to win by a length.

In the second race, however, Pendleton rallied back when Meares hesitated, and the Briton forced a tension-filled third and deciding race.

Drawing the less desirable first position, Meares tried to force Pendleton to the fore by coming to a near stand-still on the banking. The adrenaline was so high, Meares said she was literally shaking in her shoes.

"I was so nervous - my foot was shaking on the pedal and I couldn't steady the stance. On the fourth attempt I finally got her to take the front. It's always nerve wrecking doing a standstill in front of a crowd like this, but with so much hinging on that race it was a case of do or die. I knew that I wanted to be riding from the back, and yeah, it worked."

She forced Pendleton to lead through before going down track and pushing Pendleton up the banking. It allowed Meares just the jump she needed to gain an advantage in the dash to the line and send Pendleton packing.

"I like that tactic and I don't get to play it too much these days. A lot of people are very wary of my right hand side at the fence and I was surprised I got the opportunity to put Vicky there, she doesn't often allow that to happen," Meares said. "I took the chance, I took the risk and it paid off."

Meares then had to face her old foe, Krupeckaite, who is just one year older and has two world records, including the 500, which she also abandoned in favour of the Olympic events.

"[Simona has an] incredible reputation, being a world record holder over both 200 and 500 metres. I do have an understanding of what it's like of going that fast in a 500 - I'm about 0.1 off her best time in the 500 - so I knew this was going to be difficult. But I also knew what kind of tactics to play against her."

Meares put in a clean and commanding first race to take the advantage, but in the second round said she had to get forceful in order to earn the gold medal.

"I got myself a little caught up in the final in the second race. I had to get physical to create a path to get to the bottom of the track, and yes, I did.

Four time sprint world champion Victoria Pendleton claimed the bronze in two races against newcomer Olga Panarina of Belarus, but looked back at the semifinal round as the moment of the night

"When it gets to the semifinal, you have to beat everyone to win. You have to beat both of the riders left to win. [Anna]'s obviously on the form of her life and it's been a long time coming for her. Credit to her, she's put a lot of effort into dedicating herself and putting a lot of time in for the sprints.

"The sprints are all about making the least mistakes possible. You can't have a perfect performance - it's too much to ask. It was a good challenge. We've met each other a lot of the time in competition over the years. The balance has to swing sometimes or people wouldn't bother watching, would they?"

Pendleton recalled the third-race standstill against Meares and said, "I thought she was flaking out on two occasions. I should have been a bit more patient. I should have been a bit more cautious. You make a decision, sometimes it's right, sometimes it's wrong you just have to go for it."

Final

Gold medal final - race 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 11.984  
2 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 11.453  
Gold medal final - race 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 11.984  
2 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 11.453  
Bronze medal final - race 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
3 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 11.682  
4 Olga Panarina (Belarus)    
Bronze medal final - race 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
3 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 11.682  
4 Olga Panarina (Belarus)    

Final standings

# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia)    
2 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania)    
3 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain)    
4 Olga Panarina (Belarus)    
5 Lyubov Shulika (Ukraine)    
6 Sandie Clair (France)    
7 Kristina Vogel (Germany)    
8 Shuang Guo (People'S Republic of China)    
9 Rebecca Angharad James (Great Britain)    
10 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia)    
11 Jessica Varnish (Great Britain)    
12 Virginie Cueff (France)    
13 Lisandra Guerra Rodriguez (Cuba)    
14 Lin Junhong (People'S Republic of China)    
15 Monique Sullivan (Canada)    
16 Jinjie Gong (People'S Republic of China)    
17 Wai Sze Lee (Hong Kong, China)    
18 Emily Rosemond (Australia)    
19 Viktoria Baranova (Russian Federation)    
20 Yvonne Hijgenaar (Netherlands)    
21 Miriam Welte (Germany)    
22 Gintare Gaivenyte (Lithuania)    
23 Won Gyeong Kim (Korea)    
24 Eunmi Park (Korea)    
25 Fatehah Mustapa (Malaysia)    
26 Juliana Gaviria Rendon (Colombia)    
27 Zhao Juan Meng (Hong Kong, China)    

Semifinal

Semifinal heat 1 - race 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Olga Panarina (Belarus) 12.203  
2 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania)    
Semifinal heat 1 - race 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 11.384  
2 Olga Panarina (Belarus)    
Semifinal heat 1 - race 3
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 12.526  
2 Olga Panarina (Belarus)    
Semifinal heat 2 - race 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 11.552  
2 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain)    
Semifinal heat 2 - race 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 0:00:11.338  
2 Anna Meares (Australia)    
Semifinal heat 2 - race 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 11.473  
2 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain)    

Women's sprint 5th-8th final

# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
5 Lyubov Shulika (Ukraine) 11.633  
6 Sandie Clair (France)    
7 Kristina Vogel (Germany)    
8 Shuang Guo (People'S Republic of China)    

Women's sprint quarterfinal

Women's sprint quarterfinal - heat 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Olga Panarina (Belarus) 11.671  
2 Sandie Clair (France)    
Women's sprint quarterfinal - heat 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 0:00:11.776  
2 Kristina Vogel (Germany)    
Women's sprint quarterfinal - heat 3
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 11.542  
2 Lyubov Shulika (Ukraine)    
Women's sprint quarterfinal - heat 4
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 11.762  
2 Shuang Guo (People'S Republic of China) 11.946  

Women's sprint 1/8 final

Women's sprint 1/8 final - heat 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Olga Panarina (Belarus) 11.923  
2 Virginie Cueff (France)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final - heat 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 11.736  
2 Jessica Varnish (Great Britain)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final - heat 3
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Lyubov Shulika (Ukraine) 0:00:11.896  
2 Sandie Clair (France)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final - heat 4
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Shuang Guo (People'S Republic of China) 11.790  
2 Kristina Vogel (Germany)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final - heat 5
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 12.001  
2 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final - heat 6
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 11.542  
2 Rebecca Angharad James (Great Britain)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final repechage - heat 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Kristina Vogel (Germany) 12.068  
2 Rebecca Angharad James (Great Britain)    
3 Virginie Cueff (France)    
Women's sprint 1/8 final repechage - heat 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Sandie Clair (France) 12.389  
2 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia)    
3 Jessica Varnish (Great Britain)    

Women's sprint 1/16 final

Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 1
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Olga Panarina (Belarus) 12.465  
2 Eunmi Park (Korea)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Anna Meares (Australia) 12.203  
2 Won Gyeong Kim (Korea)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 3
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Lyubov Shulika (Ukraine) 13.362  
2 Gintare Gaivenyte (Lithuania)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 4
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Shuang Guo (People'S Republic of China) 11.966  
2 Miriam Welte (Germany)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 5
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 11.882  
2 Yvonne Hijgenaar (Netherlands)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 6
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 11.671  
2 Viktoria Baranova (Russian Federation)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 7
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Rebecca Angharad James (Great Britain) 11.874  
2 Emily Rosemond (Australia)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 8
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia) 11.970  
2 Wai Sze Lee (Hong Kong, China)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 9
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Kristina Vogel (Germany) 11.700  
2 Jinjie Gong (People'S Republic of China)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 10
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Sandie Clair (France) 11.699  
2 Monique Sullivan (Canada)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 11
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Jessica Varnish (Great Britain) 11.862  
2 Lin Junhong (People'S Republic of China)    
Women's sprint 1/16 final - heat 12
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Virginie Cueff (France) 12.088  
2 Lisandra Guerra Rodriguez (Cuba)    

200m TT qualifying

# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Olga Panarina (Belarus) 0:00:11.120  
2 Anna Meares (Australia)    
3 Lyubov Shulika (Ukraine) 11.152  
4 Shuang Guo (People'S Republic of China) 11.188  
5 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) 11.291  
6 Victoria Pendleton (Great Britain) 11.299  
7 Rebecca Angharad James (Great Britain) 11.365  
8 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia) 11.368  
9 Kristina Vogel (Germany) 11.387  
10 Sandie Clair (France) 11.398  
11 Jessica Varnish (Great Britain) 11.401  
12 Virginie Cueff (France) 11.424  
13 Lisandra Guerra Rodriguez (Cuba) 11.456  
14 Lin Junhong (People'S Republic of China) 11.494  
15 Monique Sullivan (Canada) 11.502  
16 Jinjie Gong (People'S Republic of China) 11.514  
17 Wai Sze Lee (Hong Kong, China) 11.522  
18 Emily Rosemond (Australia) 11.546  
19 Viktoria Baranova (Russian Federation) 11.563  
20 Yvonne Hijgenaar (Netherlands) 11.594  
21 Miriam Welte (Germany) 11.733  
22 Gintare Gaivenyte (Lithuania) 11.736  
23 Won Gyeong Kim (Korea) 11.748  
24 Eunmi Park (Korea) 12.022  
25 Fatehah Mustapa (Malaysia) 12.125  
26 Juliana Gaviria Rendon (Colombia) 12.217  
27 Zhao Juan Meng (Hong Kong, China) 12.377  
DNS Willy Kanis (Netherlands)