* A record 76 countries will send cyclists to Colombia for the world cycling championships. Why? The Worlds are an Olympic qualifier for a limited number of cycling spots. * By basing Olympic qualification on the Worlds, the Union Cycliste International (UCI) ensured full support for the Worlds despite fears over security in Colombia and the high cost of preparing and competing at altitude. * Work continues around the clock to put the finishing touches on the new velodrome at the El Salitre sports complex in Bogota. * Three new track events will be seen by spectators -- the Olympic Sprint for teams of three, two-man Madison and a 500 meters time trial for women. * World Champion Marty Nothstein hopes to defend his titles despite crashing in early September and fracturing his right knee. He has been cleared to compete by doctors but he's reported to be in considerable pain. * The 17-kilometer (10.2-mile) circuit at Duitama, 190 kilometers (114 miles) northeast of Bogota, is reported to be paved. (Earlier reports noted unpaved stretches.) The "big boys" will do 15 laps of the circuit.
Walter Perez (Argentina) beat Barrow Musgrove (Bahamas) David George (South Africa) beat Jose Medina (Chile) Marcos Zaragoza (Mexico) beat Randy Albury (Bahamas) Mindaugas Umaras (Lithuania) beat Gonzalo Garcia (Argentina) Jukka Heinkainen (Finland) beat Ivan Dominguez (Cuba) Jarich Bakker (Netherlands) beat Victor Herrera (Colombia) Juan Llameras (Spain) beat Sergei Vlotcmok (Bulgaria) Mike McCarty (U.S.) beat Alexandre Simonenko (Ukraine) Philip Collins (Ireland) beat Jaroslav Rebiennwski (Poland) Lee Vertogen (New Zealand) beat Friedrich Berei (Austria) Edouard Gritsoun (Russia) beat Gianfranco Conti (Italy) Arturas Kasputis (Lithuania) beat Santiago Botero (Colombia) Peter Pieters (Netherlands) beat Evgeni Vakker (Kyrgyzstan) Andrea Colinelli (Italy) beat Mariano Friedick (U.S.) Dietmar Muller (Austria) beat George Portelanos (Greece) Bradley McGee (Australia) beat Alexei Marvok (Russia) Bryan Steele (Britain) beat Alexander Aesbach (Switzerland) Jan Bo Peterson (Denmark) beat Robert Karsnicki (Poland) Graeme Obree (Britain) beat Brian Walton (Canada) Andrei Iatsenko (Ukraine) beat Marc Streel (Belgium) Stuart O'Grady (Australia) beat Philippe Ermenault (France) Juan Martinez (Spain) beat Jens Lehmann (Germany) Francis Moreau (France) beat Guido Fulst (Germany)
First heat 1.Marty Nothstein (U.S.) 10.606 seconds 2. Emanuel Raasch (Germany) 3. Mario Benetdh (Italy0 4. Toshimasa Yoshioka (Japan) 5. Alan Irvin (South Africa) 6. Walter Ramsay (Bahamas) Second heat 1. Marcelo Arrue (Chile) 10.897 secs. 2. Nikolai Kovch (Russia) 3. Brian Dandanell (Denmark) 4. Trey Gannon (U.S.) 5. Barry Forde (Barbados) 6. Lambros Vassilopoulos (Greece) John Jaime Gonzalez (Colombia) disqualified Third heat 1. Frederico Paris (Italy) 11.031 secs. 2. Flavio Guidoni (Argentina) 3. John Rastrick (New Zealand) 4. Lars Brian Nielsen (Denmark) 5. Yuji Yamada (Japan) 6. George Himonetos (Greece) 7. Jean-Pierre Vanzyl (South Africa) 8. Johny Hoyte (Bahrain)
*1st Heat* The defending champ, Nothstein is in this heat. They go off, Nothstein in third, low on the track. Now he moves up to second, a New Zealand on his side, an Italian behind the motor. Nothstein then goes around and is right behind. Then the Italian and a New Zealander. A crash, the New Zealand goes down, but isn't hurt. Back to the race -- still Nothstein on the front. Is that a German, Raasch? A green jersey comes up high on the track, but I don't recognize it at all. Nothstein leads out from the front after the motor pulls off. A Japanese rider tries it high, but he doesn't have the strength and falls back. The German still on Nothstein's wheel. No one challenges him and Nothstein wins easily. The German in second. *2nd Heat* The German Hubner is certainly the favorite here. Another rider I recognize is Gannon, the surprise US champion. They go off, Gannon quickly goes off to the front, an immediate crash, and the favorite Hubner goes down. Gannon behind the motor, only 6 riders left. A Chilean next to Gannon, a Dane. The motor pulls off. Gannon goes from the front, looking for a Nothstein repeat. But he doesn't have the World Champion's speed and he falls well back. The Chilean comes to the front, just a little ahead. Behind him the Dane and another rider battle for second. Looks like the Dane in third, given a multicolored jersey, sort of pastel blue white and purple. I have no idea who it was, sorry. *3rd Heat* The Italian, Paris, is the favorite in this heat. He has apparently been racing the Japanese pro circuit. Off they go and Paris drops into third position. A New Zealander in first, then a South African. They string out behind the motor, not as much jostling in this heat -- maybe they learned from the crashes. A Dane is behind Paris in 4th. As they come to the end of the paced laps, a Japanese comes up from the back, an Argentine on his wheel. The motor pulls off with the Japanese rider timing it so he is in first, then Argentina and New Zealand. Paris is in 4th. Paris comes hard over the top, blows right by to the front rider, and wins very easily. The Argentine takes 2nd. *4th Heat* Most notable here is Magnien, FR, and I believe that Morreno, the Spanish kilo rider is in this heat, although I could be mistaken. Swift, a third US rider, permitted because of a slot going to the defending champ is in this heat as well.. They go off. A Belgian slots in behind the motor, Swift in second. Magnien in about 6th. Again, they string out behind the motor. Now an Argentine comes around and pushes Swift back into 3rd. The motor pulls off. The Argentine comes immediately to the front and goes hard, getting the tiniest of gaps. Magnien moves up to third. The Belgian comes to the front, as the Argentine drops back. Magnien makes his move and comes easily over the top for a clear win. The Spanish rider comes down inside of the line for second from the Belgian. I assume he will be relegated, but we don't get word before the coverage cuts off.