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Australians scoop four medals in second day of junior worlds

Women's individual pursuit podium

Women's individual pursuit podium (Image credit: Alliance Photo)

Racing excited stepped up during the second day of the 2008 UCI Junior World Championships at the Bellville Velodrome in South Africa. The climax of the evening was the men's keirin final in which the six finalists engaged in a fierce battle for the championship title. The gold went to Charlie Concord (France) in a tight finish, the silver to Sotirious Bretas (Greece) and the bronze to Paul Fellows from Australia.

It was an all-Australian final in the women's individual pursuit with Ashlee Ankudinoff taking gold and Sarah Kent completing her hat trick of silver medals in her last three major international championships. New Zealander Gemma Dudley added a bronze to the silver she won in the scratch race last night.

The women's team sprint final was won by French duo Magalie Baudacci and Olivia Monauban, with the silver medal going to Aleksandra Drejgier and Kornelia Maczka of Poland and the bronze medal to Russia's pair of Victoria Baranova and Galina Streltsova.

The men's team pursuit was just as tight with favourites Australia going head to head against Russia and New Zealand and France fighting for the bronze. The Australian quartet of Luke Davison and Rohan Dennis (who took silver in the men's individual pursuit on Saturday) Luke Durbridge, Thomas Palmer pipped the Russians at the post for the gold medal (4:17.933). The Russian team of Konstantin Kuperasov, Artur Ershov, Viktor Shmalka and Matvey Zubov took the silver medal (4:20.024) and New Zealand's team won bronze in a time of 4:24.290.

449 Riders from 59 nations are competing for podium finishes and world records at the junior worlds. Performances over the last two days promise some future cycling superstars. The third day of racing continues Monday and will include sprints and pursuits for the women and the time trial and points race for the men.

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Sue George is an editor at Cyclingnews.  She coordinates all of the site's mountain bike race coverage and assists with the road, 'cross and track coverage.