Men's Team Sprint
Sky+ HD's Chris Hoy completed a clean sweep in his return to World Cup competition as he, Ross Edgar and Jamie Staff defeated Team GB's Matthew Crampton, Jason Kenny and David Daniell in an all-British team sprint final in Manchester.
An upset looked likely as Team GB finished the first lap with a narrow lead, but Edgar steadied the Sky ship in time for Hoy to seal the win. Sky's 43.423 knocked a further tenth of a second off their qualification time. In contrast, Team GB finished a shade outside their qualification time.
For Hoy, the win was his third gold medal of the weekend. He said he had made the decision to withdraw from the exhibition JKA Keirin races in order to focus on the team sprint. "I wanted to show the same commitment to the team sprint as my other events and it's an Olympic medal event," he said. "I felt that doing the Japanese Keirin as well would compromise our performance in the team sprint today and I wanted to give it 100 percent."
Hoy and his Sky teammates were rewarded for their commitment to the task; Their victory was taken in a time over a second faster than France's winning time at the World Championships in March.
"I don't think I could have expected anymore and when I woke up this morning with sore legs, struggling to get out of bed, I didn't expect us to got that quick today," said Hoy, after anchoring the Sky effort. "That last lap there was a 13.02 and I believe that's the fastest time ever for that leg of a team sprint, so I'm delighted."
In the bronze medal race Germany's Robert Forstemann, Tobias Wachter and Stefan Nimke improved on their heat time to defeat Sergey Borizov, Denis Dmitriev and Sergey Kucherov of the Moscow Track Team.
Earlier, Sky had combined to set the fastest time in qualification. Great Britain's sprint armada sailed on into the finals as the Sky and Team GB (Matthew Crampton, Jason Kenny and David Daniell) clocked times below the 34 second barrier, the only teams able to do so.
Moscow Track Team were the first to set a stable time. Their 44.621 stood up to pressure from Team Jayco's 44.689 (Daniel Ellis, Jason Niblett and Scott Sunderland) Japan's 44.721(Kazuya Narita, Yudai Nitta and Kazunari Wanatabe) and China's 44.900 (Qi Tang, Chongyong Wang and Lei Zhang).
But with the favourites yet to start and the French teams unable to match their country's World Championship performance, Moscow's position looked precarious. Team GB were the first to make their claim with 43.804. The time caused rapid movement in the British camp as coaches scrambled to relay final instructions to the Sky team on the opposite side of the velodrome.
Whatever they had to say worked. Staff, Edgar and Hoy stopping the clock only half a second outside the World record established by Great Britain at last year's Olympics. Their opponents in the heat, Germany, mustered 44.157, enough to ensure that they would race Moscow for the bronze medal final.
Men's Scratch Race
Ivan Kovalev (Russia) won the Men's Scratch Race at the World Cup in Manchester with a commanding display of tactics and strength. Lukasz Bujko (Poland) finished second with Sergiy Laguti (Ukraine) in third.
The trio formed part of a six man group midway through the race with Matthew Brammeier (Ireland), Kazuhio Mori (Japan) and Robson Dias (Brazil). The group worked well together, before Dias was shelled out the back just as the leaders gained a lap on the field with 35 laps to go.
It sparked the pack into life as the chance of winning a medal began to slip away. Among those who tried to break clear were Chris Newton (Great Britain), Howard (Australia) and Colby Pearce (USA). But they were all reeled in with less than twenty laps remaining.
Shane Archbold (New Zealand) tried to go solo, briefly joined by Howard but with less than ten laps to go Elia Viviani (Italy) tore off the front. As the pack hesitated Kovalev seized his opportunity, and in a fine display of strength caught the Italian and sprinted to victory. Behind him Newton led home the rest of the bunch.
"I can't believe it," Kovalev told Cyclingnews. "I came here to win and I knew I was strong but do attack like that, it felt incredible."
Second placed Bujko was just as happy with his silver medal. "It's the first Polish medal of the weekend so it means a lot to both me and the team. I came fourth in the Points race so still had something to prove coming into this race."
Men's Team Pursuit
Britain's men returned to the top of the World's team pursuit tree to win the opening round of the World Cup over Spain on Sunday afternoon, narrowly outside their own World record.
The quartet of Geraint Thomas, Ed Clancy, Andrew Tennant and Steven Burke caught their opponents in the final, Spain, after 3000 metres, but pressed on to complete their 4 kilometre test in 3:54.395, a shade over one second behind the World mark established in Beijing last year.
It was one-way traffic for the Britons as their race plan saw them move to an early lead over Spain's Sergi Escobar, David Muntaner, Antonio Tauler and Eloy Teruel. The British team reel in their opponents at an average of three seconds for each of the first three kilometres.
Spain lost a rider and shortly afterwards the British quartet rolled smoothly past the trio that remained. Clancy, Thomas, Tennant and Burke settled in for their final laps on the now clear track. As the four crossed the line side-by-side, agonisingly close to the World mark British Cycling's principal Dave Brailsford could be seen to throw his hands up in mock exasperation, before his face cracked into a wry grin.
The team's performance was a demonstration of the seemingly never-ending depth of the British pursuit ranks. Ben Swift, who had earlier helped the team to set the fastest time in qualification, made way in the final for World Cup debutant, 22-year-old Andrew Tennant.
"I’m pleased with that for the first World Cup," said Tennant afterwards. "We planned to catch them at the end of our second turn and it worked out perfectly. The exciting thing about is that not everyone is on top form. I think the world record is going to go in the next couple of years, hopefully to us."
Despite an admission of nerves before the final, British team pursuit stalwart Ed Clancy echoed the prediction of his younger colleague; an ominous indication for Britain's future opponents.
"We were nervous going into it, but we rode pretty well. Geraint has been stomping around and you saw him in the individual pursuit and how strong he is. We can definitely go quicker."
In the race for third, the Ukrainian combination of Maksym Fonrabe, Maksym Polishchuk, Vitaliy Shchedov and Roman Kononenko were gifted bronze after their German opponents failed to finish.
Robert Bartko, Henning Bommel, Stefan Shäfer and late addition Roger Kluge fell behind the Ukrainians, but any chance of a late rally exploded, literally, as they suffered a puncture in the final 1000 metres.
Women's Team pursuit
Wendy Houvenagel, Lizzie Armitstead and Jo Rowsell did what their male counterparts had only narrowly been unable to accomplish, as their British team pursuit squad set a new World record on the way to victory over Germany at the World Cup in Manchester on Sunday afternoon.
They finished in 3:21.875, knocking almost half a second of the record established on the Manchester track at the 2008 World Championships.
A pleased British Cycling team manager, Dave Brailsford, said the result had been part of the team's strategy for what was the final event of the World Cup's programme. "They set out the break the record and that’s what they did. It’s a fantastic way to end a fantastic weekend," he said.
"The rest of the world got a bit chipper last year so it was important that we put our marker down and showed them that we’re still in the business of winning. For the girls I’m really proud though. There is still more to come from them."
The trio build a steady two second lead over the German trio throughout the opening two kilometres of the race, before pushing home their advantage in the final thousand metres to win by five seconds and eclipse the world mark.
"We were really keen to break it today," said Rowsell. "We knew we had it in us from our times in training but it’s about getting the right conditions on the day. It makes a lot of difference having another team on the track to drag you around and we could see them with three laps to go. Obviously Wendy and Lizzie were tired from two other races so we weren’t certain."
The result showed that Armitstead is a worthy replacement for Rebecca Romero in the team pursuit formation. The final completed a busy, but successful weekend as she took her second gold medal after Saturday's points race victory.
"It’s hard work having so many races, but it’s easier when it’s a team responsibility," Armistead said. "It’s just not about me, it’s about the other girls so it’s there's no question about backing up, even when you’re tired."
Germany's Lisa Brennauer, Verena Joos and Madeline Sandig claimed silver with in 3:26.403. Aware of the strength of their opposition, the Germans were satisfied with second place and had approached the final with the aim of breaking their national record, a goal they only narrowly missed out on.
"The heats themselves were hard, so getting to the final was an achievement," said Brennauer after the final. "The British team were strong, so we wanted to ride our own race and post as good a time as possible. For the first 2000 metres we were fine and after that we just wanted to give it everything for a personal best. We just missed it but we’re going to work harder next time."
Australia wrapped up the bronze medal, with a three second victory over The Netherlands in their contest. Belinda Goss, Tess Downing and Josephine Tomic established a two second lead over Vera Koedooder, Amy Pieters and Ellen Van Dijk in the first kilometre before taking a relatively comfortable victory.
For Goss, the result added a bronze to her gold medal in the scratch race. Like most observers, she was quick to acknowledge the work that will be required in order to close the now even bigger gap to the British squad.
"I guess it’s a good start [to the World Cup season], but looking at the Brit’s time we’ve certainly got a bit of work to do there in the pursuit," said Goss. "We’ll continue to work on it. We’ve got to look back, watch our performance to see where we can find those eight or so seconds. On a personal level I’ve had a good weekend with two medals and I’m looking forward to progressing."
Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania) took Gold in the Women's Keirin final ahead of Shuang Guo (China) and Anna Meares (Australia) in a thrilling final. It was Meares who moved to the front at the start of the race with World Champion Guo glued to her wheel and Victoria Pendleton (Sky) tucked in at the back of the six-strong field.
With two laps to go Meares turned to watch the opposition, just as Guo let a small gap develop ahead of her, before accelerating by Meares. Krupeckaite had to battle through the repechages to make the final after losing in her first heat this morning.
Krupeckaite latched onto the Chinese rider in the final and swooped past with a lap to go and despite leading out from so far, held on for the win.
"It was a very hard race with very strong girls," said Krupeckaite. "It was a huge task but I made it through. Coming into the final two laps I was slightly too far back against such good opposition. I was worried but I dug it out and once on the front I wasn't going to let it slip."
As for Meares, it was her third medal of the World Cup after picking up a Gold in the 500m Time Trial and the Team Sprint.
"I was looking forward to the Keirin so much and I'm really pleased to get another medal. I tried a couple of new things and I wanted to go out there and be as pro-active as possible, which I did. The key is to try different things until something works for you."
In the 7-11th place final Elisa Frisoni (Italy) took win ahead of Virginie Cueff (France).
|1||Team Sky + Hd||0.43.598|
|Ross Edgar (GBr)|
|Chris Hoy (GBr)|
|Matthew Crampton (GBr)|
|David Daniell (GBr)|
|Jason Kenny (GBr)|
|Stefan Nimke (Ger)|
|Tobias Wachter (Ger)|
|4||Moscow Track Team||0.44.621|
|Sergey Borisov (Rus)|
|Denis Dmitriev (Rus)|
|Sergey Kucherov (Rus)|
|Daniel Ellis (Aus)|
|Jason Niblett (Aus)|
|Scott Sunderland (Aus)|
|Yudai Nitta (Jpn)|
|Kazunari Watanabe (Jpn)|
|Chongyang Wang (Chn)|
|Lei Zhang (Chn)|
|8||Alks Stal Grudziaduz||0.45.035|
|Lukasz Kwiatkowski (Pol)|
|Adrian Teklinski (Pol)|
|Quentin Lafargue (Fra)|
|Teun Mulder (Ned)|
|François Pervis (Fra)|
|Cretei Charlie Conord (Fra)|
|Cretei Michaël D'almeida (Fra)|
|Ilya Okunev (Rus)|
|Pavel Yakushevskiy (Rus)|
|Maciej Bielecki (Pol)|
|Damian Zielinski (Pol)|
|Vasileios Reppas (Gre)|
|Christos Volikakis (Gre)|
|Zafeirios Volikakis (Gre)|
|Yevhen Bolibrukh (Ukr)|
|Artem Frolov (Ukr)|
|Andrii Vynokurov (Ukr)|
|Yorrick Bos (Ned)|
|Yondi Schmidt (Ned)|
|Roy Van Den Berg (Ned)|
|Edrus Md Yunos (Mas)|
|Hafiz Sufian (Mas)|
|Hariff Saleh (Mas)|
|Itmar Esteban Herraiz (Spa)|
|Alfredo Moreno Cano (Spa)|
|Adria Sabate Masip (Spa)|
|Tomas Babek (Cze)|
|Filip Ditzel (Cze)|
|Denis Spicka (Cze)|
|1||Simona Krupeckaite (Ltu) Lithuania|
|2||Olga Panarina (Blr) Belarus|
|3||Shuang Guo (Chn) China|
|4||Miriam Welte (Ger) Germany|
|5||Kaarle Mcculloch (Aus) Australia|
|DSQ||Victoria Baranova (Rus) Russia|
|1||Anna Meares (Aus) Australia|
|2||Agnes Ronner (Ned) Netherlands|
|3||Victoria Pendleton (GBr) Team Sky + HD|
|4||Virginie Cueff (Fra) France|
|5||Elisa Frisoni (Ita) FFA|
|6||Olivia Montauban (Fra) France|
|1||Simona Krupeckaite (Ltu) Lithuania|
|2||Shuang Guo (Chn) People's Republic of China|
|3||Anna Meares (Aus) Australia|
|4||Agnes Ronner (Ned) Netherlands|
|5||Victoria Pendleton (GBr) Team Sky + HD|
|6||Olga Panarina (Blr) Belarus|
|7||Elisa Frisoni (Ita) Gruppo Sportivo Fiamme Azzurre|
|8||Virginie Cueff (Fra) France|
|9||Miriam Welte (Ger) Germany|
|10||Olivia Montauban (Fra) France|
|11||Kaarle Mcculloch (Aus) Australia|
|1||Ivan Kovalev (Rus) Russia|
|2||Lukasz Bujko (Pol) Poland|
|3||Sergiy Lagkuti (Ukr) Ukraine|
|4||Matthew Brammeier (Irl) Ireland|
|5||Kazuhiro Mori (Jpn) Japan|
|6||Elia Viviani (Ita) Italy|
|7||Chris Newton (GBr) Great Britain|
|8||Roger Kluge (Ger) Germany|
|9||Petr Lazar (Cze) Czech Republic|
|10||Shane Archbold (NZl) New Zealand|
|11||Adiq Husainie Othman (Mas) Malaysia|
|12||Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) France|
|13||Fabio Masotti (Ita) FFA|
|14||Unai Elorriaga Zubiaur (Spa) Spain|
|15||Angel Dario Colla (Arg) Argentina|
|16||Michael Vingerling (Ned) Netherlands|
|17||David Boily (Can) Canada|
|18||KamPo Wong (HKg) Hong Kong, China|
|19||Loïc Perizzolo (Swi) Switzerland|
|20||Werner Riebenbauer (Aut) Austria|
|21||Leigh Howard (Aus) Australia|
|22||Colby Pearce (USA) United States Of America|
|23||Javier Azkue Prieto (Spa) FGN|
|DNF||Robson Dias (Bra) Brazil|
|1||Team Sky + HD||0.43.423|
|Ross Edgar (GBr) Team Sky + HD|
|Chris Hoy (GBr) Team Sky + HD|
|Jamie Staff (GBr)|
|Matthew Crampton (GBr) Great Britain|
|David Daniell (GBr) Great Britain|
|Jason Kenny (GBr) Great Britain|
|Robert Forstemann (Ger)|
|Stefan Nimke (Ger) Germany|
|Tobias Wachter (Ger) Germany|
|4||Moscow Track Team||0.44.732|
|Sergey Borisov (Rus) Moscow Track Team|
|Denis Dmitriev (Rus) Moscow Track Team|
|Sergey Kucherov (Rus) Moscow Track Team|
|Sergi Escobar Roure|
|David Muntaner Juaneda|
|Antonio Tauler Llull|
|Eloy Teruel Rovira|
|Elizabeth Armitstead (GBr) Great Britain|
|Wendy Houvenaghel (GBr) Great Britain|
|Joanna Roswell (GBr) Great Britain|
|Lisa Brennauer (Ger) Germany|
|Verena Joos (Ger) Germany|
|Madeleine Sandig (Ger) Germany|
|Tess Downing (Aus) Australia|
|Belinda Goss (Aus) Australia|
|Josephine Tomic (Aus) Australia|
|Vera Koedooder (Ned) Netherlands|
|Amy Pieters (Ned) Netherlands|
|Ellen Van Dijk (Ned) Netherlands|
|1||Matthew Crampton (GBr) Great Britain|
|2||Christos Volikakis (Gre) Greece|
|3||Azizulhasni Awang (Mas) BTA|
|4||David Daniell (GBr) Great Britain|
|5||Shane Perkins (Aus) Australia|
|6||Tomas Babek (Cze) Czech Republic|
|7||Jason Kenny (GBr) Great Britain|
|8||Maximilian Levy (Ger) Germany|
|9||Ross Edgar (GBr) Team Sky + HD|
|10||Jason Niblett (Aus) Team Jayco|
|11||Carten Bergemann (Ger) Germany|
|12||Andrii Vynokurov (Ukr) Ukraine|
|13||François Pervis (Fra) Cofidis|
|13||Teun Mulder (Ned) Cofidis|
|13||Kazuya Narita (Jpn) Japan|
|16||Makoto Yoshikawa (Jpn) Japan|
|16||Tomokazu Sato (Jpn) Japan|
|16||Yudai Nitta (Jpn) Japan|
|19||Kazunari Watanabe (Jpn) Japan|