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2006 Commonwealth Games - JR
Melbourne, Australia, March 16-26, 2006
March 18: Mens sprint
Bayley defends superbly in Melbourne
By Mal Sawford in Melbourne
Ryan Bayley (Australia) defended his Manchester gold medal in fine style, and maintained his unbeaten run at these Games. Bayley had won every round of the previous night's keirin, and claimed the sprint win tonight without losing a ride.
His opponent, Ross Edgar (Scotland) drew the starting position in the first round and made no real effort to force Bayley into the lead in the opening laps; and Bayley was equally content to follow. When Edgar made his move at the bell, the Australian matched his effort and began to move past before Edgar kicked again to get back on terms and the pair raced shoulder to shoulder to the finish, where the photo showing Bayley in front. The final round saw Bayley lead off at walking pace with a watchful Edgar sitting a couple of lengths behind. The margin had crept to three lengths and the bell, and Bayley jumped hard and maintained the advantage all the way to the line, cheered home by a delighted crowd.
"I was switched on from the start - I've been switched on all week," said Bayley in the mix zone. "He [Edgar] had me tied up in knots in the first heat, and I couldn't afford to do that again. I led him out in the second heat and could see him moving about so I got edgy...I started accelerating, and when I accelerate I just keep accelerating. It's very hard to come around someone when they are accelerating hard."
Edgar was, "very pleased with my ride. I freaked him in the first round - I hope I can get him next time but he's obviously a world-class athlete."
The bronze medal final went Canada's way, with Travis Smith showing he could win from in front or behind against the relatively inexperienced Crampton. Smith led the charge in the first ride, but kept the pace slow until the back straight of the final lap, not leaving enough distance for the faster moving Englishman to come past before the race was over. Smith said later that, "I spent all day fighting flat legs so I tried to sprint more tactically - but usually I'm not good at that, I usually rely on power. I found out I'm better in front when I can control a race."
Crampton rode the second heat from the front, and kept the pace much higher, but only succeeded in giving Smith a perfect lead out, which he took full advantage of to win his second medal of the Games.
With Lynch a non-starter after his disqualification, the three-up ride off for fifth place was taken out by Justin Grace who took an opportunistic flyer off the front with a lap and a half to travel. Librizzi and Ng failed to react, with Ng besting the Scot as they drag raced to the line.
Edgar and Smith proved to be evenly matched in head to head competition. The Scot won the first round with a long front running effort, while the second saw Smith triumph with a similar tactic. Edgar ran up the back of Smith in the final metres pushing the Canadian onto the duck boards; and in the final bend he had been forced wide in the final bend as Smith bobbled out of the sprinter's lane, but officials allowed the result to stand.
Smith used a similar approach in the deciding round, jumping a lap and half from home and opening a bike length advantage. Edgar was back on terms at the bell, and the pair drag raced to the finish, with Smith finally conceding in the home straight.
Matthew Crampton looked to have stolen the opening ride of his heat against Bayley, slipping four lengths clear of an inattentive Bayley at the bell and setting sail for home. Bayley looked out of it, but cheered on by the parochial crowd lifted and chased back to the Englishman's wheel midway through the final bend and powered past in the straight.
Bayley allowed Crampton to lead out in their second ride, but followed far more closely after his narrow escape in the first round. Crampton left his dash for the line a little later, but Bayley, who looked to be riding a far smaller gear than any of his competitors, wound up in a blur of thrashing arms and legs and shot past in the final bend, to win easing down.
Edgar, the fastest qualifier, had little trouble in his quarter final match with Justin Grace, moving into the semi finals in straight rounds after seemingly effortlessly running down his opponent in both rides.
The second heat was far more spectacular, with Jamaican speedster Ricardo Lynch trying to hold off English champion Matthew Crampton for the entire final lap. Lynch lurched out of the sprinters lane a number of times, but Crampton boxed on, and the two hit the line together. The photo showed Lynch had crossed first, but commissaires later disqualified the spectacular Jamaican from the competition for once again failing to hold his line, having issued a warning after his 1/8 final with Ng.
Defending Commonwealth Games champion Ryan Bayley faced Librizzi, and also moved into the next round in straight rounds, riding from the front both times. In the second ride, Bayley sensed that the Scot had laid off, ready to make a run, and wound up to top speed in the saddle and rode away from his helpless opponent.
The final match saw Smith in total control in both rides against Ng, winning the first round from behind; and the second from the front after Ng over-reacted to a feint in the first bend and lost two lengths.
Three riders from Fiji had their first taste of an indoor velodrome, and despite having to share one bike between them survived unscathed - although Rakeshwar Lal was awarded a restart after pulling his foot in his first attempt at the flying 200 metre time trial.
Mohamad Hafiz Sufian (Malaysia), the second rider off, was the first under the 11 second barrier with 10.908, but his time at the head of the leader board lasted less than a minute before Nathan Seddon (New Zealand) recorded a 10.843. Seddon's time stood until team mate Justin Grace lowered it to 10.789, but the Malaysians were back on top after Mohd Rizal Tisin's 10.699, and although 19-year-old Australian debutant Shane Perkins came close to Tisin's time he failed by just 0.004, but keirin winner Ryan Bayley scorched around the track in 10.407.
English youngster Matthew Crampton, another 19-year-old, lowered his personal best by almost 0.2 seconds with a time of 10.307, but the best time came from keirin bronze medalist Ross Edgar, who stopped the clock in a sizzling 10.294. The top six seeds all moved through to the next round, with Edgar, Crampton and Bayley all recording straight forward wins. The match between Josiah Ng (Malaysia) and Ricardo Lynch (Jamaica) was much tighter after Lynch, a pupil of Frederic Magne at the UCI's development school, attacked in turn four with a little over a lap to travel and opened a two length lead.
Ng clawed his way onto Lynch's wheel in the back straight, and made his run in the home straight, with the pair hitting the line almost simultaneously but the photo showed Ng had prevailed. The next heat also needed the services of the photo finish camera to separate Perkins from Travis Smith. Perkins rode the heat from the front, and almost held off the keirin silver medalist, but the Canadian took the win with a perfect throw at the line. The final heat saw Marco Librizzi (Scotland) blast past Tisin after the Malayasian rider ran wide in the first corner, handing the Scot an easy win.
Both repechage heats saw two countrymen drawn together. Lynch faced Sufian and Tisal in the first heat, and controlled the three-up race from the front to move into the quarter finals. Perkins wasn't so lucky in the final heat, drawn against Grace and Seddon. Perkins positioned himself between the two Kiwis but was caught out by an attack off the front by Grace while he kept an eye on the danger from behind.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Rob Jones/www.canadiancyclist.com
Images by Shane Goss/www.licoricegallery.com
Images by AFP Photo
Qualifying 200m 1 Ross Edgar (Scotland) 10.294 (69.944km/h) 2 Matthew Crampton (England) 10.307 (69.855km/h) 3 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 10.407 (69.184km/h) 4 Ricardo Lynch (Jamaica) 10.451 (68.893km/h) 5 Travis Smith (Canada) 10.452 (68.886km/h) 6 Marco Librizzi (Scotland) 10.656 (67.568km/h) 7 Mohd Rizal Tisin (Malaysia) 10.699 (67.296km/h) 8 Shane Perkins (Australia) 10.703 (67.271km/h) 9 Josiah Ng (Malaysia) 10.744 (67.014km/h) 10 Justin Grace (New Zealand) 10.789 (66.735km/h) 11 Nathan Seddon (New Zealand) 10.843 (66.402km/h) 12 Mohamad Hafiz Sufian (Malaysia) 10.908 (66.007km/h) 13 Cameron Mackinnon (Canada) 11.023 (65.318km/h) 14 Adam Stewart (New Zealand) 11.069 (65.047km/h) 15 John Cumberbatch (Barbados) 11.173 (64.441km/h) 16 Jason Forde (Barbados) 11.456 (62.849km/h) 17 Percival Epeli Navolo (Fiji) 13.529 (53.219km/h) 18 Vinesh Lal (Fiji) 14.636 (49.194km/h) 19 Rakeshwar Lal (Fiji) 14.815 (48.599km/h) 1/8 Finals Heat 1 1 Ross Edgar (Scotland) 11.279 (63.835km/h) 2 Mohamad Hafiz Sufian (Malaysia) Heat 2 1 Matthew Crampton (England) 10.865 (66.268km/h) 2 Nathan Seddon (New Zealand) Heat 3 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 11.069 (65.047km/h) 2 Justin Grace (New Zealand) Heat 4 1 Josiah Ng (Malaysia) 10.895 (66.085km/h) 2 Ricardo Lynch (Jamaica) Heat 5 1 Travis Smith (Canada) 11.283 (63.813km/h) 2 Shane Perkins (Australia) Heat 6 1 Marco Librizzi (Scotland) 11.568 (62.241km/h) 2 Mohd Rizal Tisin (Malaysia) Repechage Heat 1 1 Ricardo Lynch (Jamaica) 11.457 (62.844km/h) 2 Mohamad Hafiz Sufian (Malaysia) 3 Mohd Rizal Tisin (Malaysia) Heat 2 1 Justin Grace (New Zealand) 10.960 (65.693km/h) 2 Shane Perkins (Australia) 3 Nathan Seddon (New Zealand) Quarterfinals Heat 1 Round 1 1 Ross Edgar (Scotland) 11.096 (64.888km/h) 2 Justin Grace (New Zealand) Round 2 1 Ross Edgar (Scotland) 11.100 (64.865km/h) 2 Justin Grace (New Zealand) Heat 2 Round 1 1 Matthew Crampton (England) DSQ Ricardo Lynch (Jamaica) Heat 3 Round 1 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 11.094 (64.900km/h) 2 Marco Librizzi (Scotland) Round 2 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 10.922 (65.922km/h) 2 Marco Librizzi (Scotland) Heat 4 Round 1 1 Travis Smith (Canada) 11.107 (64.824km/h) 2 Josiah Ng (Malaysia) Round 2 1 Travis Smith (Canada) 11.277 (63.847km/h) 2 Josiah Ng (Malaysia) Race For 5th-8th Places 5 Justin Grace (New Zealand) 11.439 (62.943km/h) 6 Josiah Ng (Malaysia) 7 Marco Librizzi (Scotland) Semifinals Heat 1 Round 1 1 Ross Edgar (Scotland) 11.369 (63.330km/h) 2 Travis Smith (Canada) Round 2 1 Travis Smith (Canada) 10.999 (65.460km/h) 2 Ross Edgar (Scotland) Round 3 1 Ross Edgar (Scotland) 10.906 (66.019km/h) 2 Travis Smith (Canada) Semifinals Heat 2 Round 1 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 10.771 (66.846km/h) 2 Matthew Crampton (England) Round 2 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 11.104 (64.841km/h) 2 Matthew Crampton (England) Final for bronze Round 1 1 Travis Smith (Canada) 11.346 (63.458km/h) 2 Matthew Crampton (England) Round 2 1 Travis Smith (Canada) 10.932 (65.862km/h) 2 Matthew Crampton (England) Final for gold Round 1 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 11.273 (63.869km/h) 2 Ross Edgar (Scotland) Round 2 1 Ryan Bayley (Australia) 10.639 2 Ross Edgar (Scotland)