Sunday, February 19, 2012

Track World Cup 2012: Day 4 - Dissapointment for Mears and Pendleton

There was disappointment for Anna Mears and Victoria Pendleton in the Kerin, but there was success for Chris Hoy and Laura Trott.

Australia kicked off the gold rush, as they dominantly beat the current Olympic and World Record holders Great Britain. The Brits had a good start and lead for the first four laps, but Australia was quick to pull it back. It wasn’t long before the first cracks began to show and Steven Burke dropped out. Burke was sitting in man three position, forcing his teammates to quickly rearrange themselves. Things just fell apart from team GB after that and they lost a further second, before the finish line.

New Zealand didn’t look like they were being pushed too hard by the Belgians, in the bronze medal ride off. There was one moment of worry when the Kiwi’s lost their last man, but they were quick to realign themselves to put a lot of time into the Belgians. All the riders in this event had to wait since Thursday, when they set their qualifying times.

Women’s Omnium
Annette Edmondson went into the overnight break with a point splitting her from Tara Whitten, in second place. Laura Trott timed her Devil performance to perfection and raised the roof, as she moved herself into third position over night. Whitten and Trott got the final day off to a good start, by taking first and second respectively in the individual pursuit. The victory moved Whitten into first overall, while Edmondson’s fifth place meant she only had a one point cushion in front of Trott.

Tatsiana Sharakova decided to put herself into contention, for a top three position, when she was the only one to take a lap on the field. Sarah Hammer moved herself into the driving seat, after taking the final sprint for second place. The result left Edmondson in second, with Whitten dropping to third and Trott into fourth.

With only one event left, the whole competition was hanging in the balance and the final event didn’t disappoint. Trott confirmed herself a medal, by taking victory in the time-trial. It was down to the two leaders to fight it out and Edmondson raised her game and equalled herself on points with Hammer. It wasn’t quite enough for the Aussie, with Hammer taking the overall victory due to her results in the timed events.

Women’s Kerin
Simona Krupeckaite showed why she is leading the world cup played it perfectly and outsprinted the current World Champion, Mears. The Lithuanian sat on the back wheel of the Australian and powered down the final straight. Victoria Pendleton was caught out and blocked in, causing her to try and go the long way around. Unusually, she didn’t have to power to get around in time and had to settle for one of the lower positions. Mears leaves the competition, after being beaten in all of her World Championship disciplines.

Individual Men’s Sprint
Chris Hoy stamped his authority on the sprint and made sure he was still in contention for the Olympic Games. Jason Kenny was dealt a blow, when he was knocked out in the heats by Max Levy. Hoy met Levy in the final and managed to beat the German in two, by using his pure power. Levy looked like he might take the Scot by surprise, on the second sprint, but Hoy kept calm and powered passed the German and it certainly doesn’t look like age is slowing him down.

Robert Förstemann caused the biggest of surprises in the deciding bronze medal race. Kevin Sireau took the first race, but Förstemann powered to take the second of the races. With nothing to lose, but a bronze medal, the team sprint gold medallist went straight from the starting gun. Sireau was obviously surprised and couldn’t keep, giving Förstemann time to salute for the final lap.

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