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World Track Championships - CM

Melbourne, Australia, May 26-30, 2004

Event program and results

Tales from the track

News and gossip from day 2 of the Melbourne World Track Championships

By Karen Forman in Melbourne

Wolff returns to Germany after training accident

German sprinter Rene Wolff will make an unscheduled trip back to Germany this morning to get urgent treatment for a knee injury sustained in a freak accident at Melbourne's Vodafone Arena this morning.

According to team manager Martin Wolf, the 26 year old from Erfurt was practicing before the morning session opened, when officials advised the track was being closed for some maintenance work and ordered all cyclists off it.

Wolff crashed after a maintenance worker moved onto the track while he was in the high-speed section of his final sprint. "He tried to avoid the worker and did, but then he crashed with a French guy, who didn't hit the track," Wolf said.

"At first we saw he had wounds on his hip and thought he would be ok, but then in the afternoon he came to the team doctor and said he had problems with his knee. Our doctor and physiotherapist said he had injured his meniscus (cartilage) and it was decided that he should go back to Germany as soon as possible for treatment."

Wolff is not happy, according to the manager. "He has had such bad luck. He was at the World Cup in Sydney but after that he was ill with a cold. He didn't run in the team sprint because of that but today he was better and wanted to ride in the keirin.

"But now he is flying to Germany tomorrow instead." Whether he makes the German Olympic side will depend on the seriousness of the Stuttgart World's bronze medal winning sprinter's (he was also fourth in the keirin) injury.

"It may take two weeks, or it may take eight (to heal)," said Wolf. "It is really bad luck."

More Day 2 News from the Melbourne World Track Championships

By Karen Forman in Melbourne

  • Ulmer breaks world record - In the final qualifying heat of the women's 3km individual pursuit, New Zealand's Sara Ulmer has broken the world record with a time of 3.30.604, two-tenths of a second inside the record that was set by Holland's Leontien Zijlaard - Van Moorsel in a semi-final at the Sydney Olympics.
  • Secret women's business challenges Van Moorsel - It's not the kind of thing that people (especially males) talk out loud about - but female athletes of all disciplines certainly know that having - or not having - a menstrual period when it's time for an important event can make or break you.
  • Australia misses out on hoped-for second kilo berth - Australia's hopes to forge a second berth for the men's kilo at the Athens Olympics - and Ben Kersten's Olympic dream - were shattered in Melbourne tonight when neither Kersten nor Shane Kelly finished in the top four of the world championship event.
  • Alzamora wants to repeat Aussie madison gold - Spaniard Miquel Alzamora has travelled a long way to Australia hoping to achieve his lifelong dream of Olympics qualification. But that's not the only reason he came to the World Track Championships in Melbourne this week.
  • Mendez wants to take gold for Mexico - At 30 she is one of the more senior female cyclists at Melbourne's Vodafone Arena for the 2004 World Track Championships, but Mexican Belem Guerrero Mendez isn't letting extra years give her extra stress as she prepares for the women's points race on Saturday.