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Track World Cup 07-08 Round 1 - CDM

Sydney, Australia, November 30-December 2, 2007

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Session 6 - December 2: Men: Madison, Sprint; Women: Team pursuit, Keirin

Russia makes history to win inaugural women's team pursuit

By Karen Forman in Sydney

The first ever podium
Photo ©: John Veage
(Click for larger image)

Fastest qualifiers Russia kept the momentum going to stake its dominance over host country Australia and win track cycling's first ever women's team's pursuit during the final round of the 2007 Sydney Track World Cup tonight – despite having never ridden together before.

Travelling at an average speed of 51.263 km/h, the Russians Eugeniya Romanyuta, Olga Slyusareva and Anastasiay Chulkova have now set 3.29.072 as the time for future female team pursuiters to beat. Maybe that will change. They told Cyclingnews after the presentation that maybe they will beat that next week in Beijing – after they've done some training as a team!

Spectators had expected a close result in tonight's final, with just three tenths of a second separating the two teams in semis this morning and the riders didn't disappoint. With individual pursuit gold medallist Katie Mactier leading them out, the Australians, including Belinda Goss and Josephine Tomic, who was stepping up to elite racing after winning gold and breaking the 1992 junior world record in the two-km individual pursuit in Mexico, started fastest and was up by 0.6 with 10 laps to go.

With Chulkova on the front, the Russians had a slower start but quickly wound it up to bring the lead back to 0.338 with six laps to go, and continued to build on it their lead as the race continued. Australia travelled the distance in 3.30.675.

It's often said that women's racing isn't as exciting as men's, but tonight's team pursuit went a long way towards correcting that notion. It was a fantastic race, with the Australians fighting against the Russian invasion with every turn of pace and a loud hometown crowd cheering their favourites on. The Russians, however, had gained 1.6 by the time the bell tolled, and it was too late for the Australians to regain their lost ground.

The race for bronze in this first ever women's teams pursuit saw the Ukrainians Svetlana Galuk, Lesya Kalitovska and Lyubov Shulika take the medal out of the reach of New Zealand (Catherine Cheatley, Joanne Kiesanowski and Alison Shanks) with a steady, controlled campaign that resulted in them slashing four seconds off this afternoon's qualification time.

Claiming they couldn't speak English but managing admirably despite the so-called handicap, the Russians said they were "yes, very happy" that they had won this first ever race of its kind and that they were now the world record holders. "We didn't think we would win," Slyusareva said. Romanyuta indicated they realistically hadn't known how they would go because "it was the first time and we didn't know."

Amazingly, they said they had never ridden together until now, with just one day to practice for the debut event. They are keen to hang onto their new crown in Beijing next week and look forward to Manchester. "Maybe we will do some training [together] before then."

Mactier said the Australians had performed beyond expectations. "It would have been nice to have won the gold, but being the first ever, we are all very delighted with silver," she said.

Tomic, meanwhile, said she had loved riding with her more experienced team-mates, saying she had looked up to them when she was younger. She won't go with Goss and Mactier to Beijing, but Mactier said she was 75 per cent certain they had qualified for Manchester. "We have now got a lot of data to look at and see what areas need working on," she said.

Men's Sprint: French domination gives Bourgain the win

By Paul Verkuylen in Sydney

The final fof the men's sprint
Photo ©: John Veage
(Click for larger image)

With three Frenchman in the final four Chris Hoy no doubt felt overwhelmed. It only took two heats for Kevin Sireau (Cofidis) to dispose of the Scotsman, booking his place in the gold medal final. After Gregory Bauge was relegated in the second round of his semi-final for moving off his sprinting line giving both riders a race a piece, Mickael Bourgain (Cofidis) took the final race to take his place in the final against his Cofidis team-mate, Sireau. The final saw the French battle topped by Bourgain.

The potential of a clean sweep of French riders on the podium, was high, with only Bauge having to fight for a medal as his compatriots were assured one of two colours, gold or silver.

Hoy and Bauge were first to ride in the bronze medal final. Hoy took the first race, taking back some of the pride lost after not making the gold medal ride off, as well as some much need confidence after failing to win a race in the semi finals. It took Hoy just one more race to secure the final position on the podium.

"The fact that Gregory had to go to three rides against Mickael meant that he was maybe a little bit tired from that so it gave me a mental boost to know that he would be feeling it a little more than I would," Hoy said right before the medal presentation. "We are all tired, it's the third day of competition, I have been racing since Friday and everyone's tired. So to know that he was a little more tired gave me that mental boost, I gave it everything that I possibly could. When I came past him it was a good feeling."

"For me the sprint is still a learning experience, even when I get beaten each race I take a little bit of positive from it. Hopefully I learn from the mistake that I made and hopefully I don't do it again. I made a few mistakes this weekend, but also I have shown progression in terms of my tactics. Although I didn't win I am really pleased with my time trial time and also with my performance in the final race. To come away with the bronze I am really pleased with that."

Bourgain, who likes to control his sprints by leading, quickly overtook Sireau after his team-mate drew the straw that would see him lead in the first race to win by a bike length. The second race saw Sireau use a different tactic, taking off quickly from the start in an attempt to take his team-mate by surprise. Unfortunately, Bourgain was too strong, easily holding Sireau's wheel before drawing level in the final bend and taking the title by a wheel as they crossed the line.

"I felt very very good and I am happy with tournament," Bourgain said via Bruno the team physio, who translated for Cyclingnews. "My hardest match up was against Greg, but that is how it goes. Today, I am happy, because both were strong rides," he concluded.

Women's Keirin: World Champ Pendleton bounces back

By Paul Verkuylen in Sydney

Six of the world's best sprinters faced off for the final in the Women's Keirin. World champion Victoria Pendleton (GBr) was up against Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania), Natallia Tsylinskaya (Belarus), Clara Sanchez (France), American Jennie Reed (Momentum Cycling) and Elisa Frisoni (Italy).

Pendleton took the coveted first position behind the derny with an in form Simona Krupeckaite on her wheel. As the derny was pulling off Tsylinskaya went for a flyer but didn't get a lead as the entire field was glued to her wheel. As the bell sounded for one lap to go, The British rider moved into third position and down the back the straight they were four-wide. Moving into the last turn she made her move around the outside to easily take the title.

After a week that saw her not do as well as she had hoped in the sprint, being knocked out in the quarter final after qualifying second, then being unable to contest the time trial due to a stomach bug she picked up, this result has put a silver lining on what would otherwise been considered a disappointing weekend.

Madison gold to Dutch again

By Karen Forman with extra reporting by Paul Verkuylen in Sydney

The winning team mid sling.
Photo ©: John Veage
(Click for larger image)

The Dutch team of Peter Schep and Jens Mouris had a powerhouse ride in tonight's finale Madison event at the Sydney Track World Cup to take the gold medal from back to the Netherlands for the second year running – despite the fact they didn't earn a single point for sprinting.

For the uninitiated, that might sound confusing – but such are the rules of the Madison, which state that if a team can gain a lap on the track, then it is the race leader no matter how many points it amasses – even if that means no points at all! Although Schep and Mouris weren't the only competitors to achieve a lap – in fact there were numerous laps taken and lost by various teams during the first half of the race - they were the only team to maintain the status quo right through to the end and therefore obviously earned their gold medal for stamina alone.

Travelling at an average speed of 55.376 km/h, the boys in the distinctive orange skinsuits worked like a well oiled machine to stage and recover from numerous attacks. They beat Spanish national team members Joan Rossello Llaneras and Carlos Tarress Torren (10 points and one lap down) and highest pointscorers Danes Michael Morkov and Alex Rasmussen (18 points and two laps down) in the 40km 160 lap event.

Tonight's Madison was played out in front of a near capacity crowd at Dunc Gray velodrome in Sydney's southwest. Although the Dutch won, many other teams impressed including the Australians Luke Roberts and Graeme Brown who finished twelfth with seven points and minus three laps, but did plenty of hard work. In fact Brown, just back on home turn from the European road season, appeared to be having a wow of a time out there on the track in one of his favourite track events.

Team Focus (Henning Bommel and Roger Kluge) was also prominent throughout, collecting most of its 12 points early in the peace.

First team to get a lap up was Slipstream (Michael Friedman and Colby Pearce) got a lap up, then after the first sprint the Spanish and Argentinean teams grabbed a lap. It was shortly after that the Dutch team took a lap along with the Spaniards, but then had a setback. Schep and Mouris finally took their race winning lap in the final 20, just after the sprint with 20 laps to go.

Nine teams finished two laps down and five three laps down, which indicates the kind of speed this Madison was won at. The Dutch riders were so obviously in the medals that Dutch team manager calculated the win on the spot.

Mouris was exhausted but elated. "This is definitely a good start, same as we ended last year in with a win Manchester."

Schep admitted to suffering towards the end: "I was already on the rivet, and then at the end I really had to dig deep."

He said the plan had been to go for the sprint with 20 laps to go but the Spanish were on their wheel. "There were other countries that were also going for the sprint," he said. "We chose a little different gear here today and that's why we fell a little short in the sprint. In the end we decided to try [to get another lap] after the sprint.

I am not sure if it was luck – at the end it was man against man. They had to ride on the front of the peloton, and we only had to get a lap. Only when we had gained a half lap did we believe that we could get the lap. We gave everything that we had in the last part to get that last wheel. It was the last objective. I didn't even know what lap it was, and then I saw a three and the last wheel of the peloton and that's where we had to be." Schep said the Spanish had ridden very strongly as well and considered he and Mouris had been lucky.

Silver medallist Llaneras said he and Torrent had come to Sydney with the main intention of taking points for Olympics selection, so the silver medal had come as a bonus. "We were trying to win or stay on the podium [but] knew it would be difficult because it is the best teams always," he said. "To win I think we needed some, what do you say, luck."

Llaneras, a multiple World Champion in the Madison with Isaac Gálvez, who passed away last year, has been training regularly with Torrent over the past year. "We are also good friends and neighbours and we train together normally every day."


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Ross Harding - VELO SportZ Media/www.velosportz.com.au

Images by John Veage


Men's Sprint 

Heat 1
1 Kévin Sireau (Cofidis)                      10.598 10.300
2 Chris Hoy (Great Britain)                                   
Heat 2
1 Mickaël Bourgain (Cofidis)                         10.903 10.762
2 Gregory Bauge (France)                      10.722


1 Mickaël Bourgain (Cofidis)                  10.916  10.92
2 Kévin Sireau (Cofidis)                                         

3 Chris Hoy (Great Britain)                   10.638  11.036
4 Gregory Bauge (France)                                         
Women's Keirin Second Round
Heat 1
1 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania)                              
2 Natallia Tsylinskaya (Belarus)                              
3 Clara Sanchez (France)                                      
4 Christin Muche (Www.Rad-Net.De)                             
5 Willy Kanis (Netherlands)                                   
6 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia)                                
Heat 2
1 Jennie Reed (Momentum Cycling)                              
2 Elisa Frisoni (Italy)                                       
3 Victoria Pendleton (Scienceinsport.Com)                     
4 Diana Maria Garcia Orrego (Colombia)                        
5 Daniela Grelui Larreal (Venezuela)                          
6 Anna Blyth (Great Britain)                                  

Final 1-6

1 Victoria Pendleton (Scienceinsport.com)                        
2 Jennie Reed (Momentum Cycling)                                 
3 Natallia Tsylinskaya (Belarus)                                 
4 Simona Krupeckaite (Lithuania)                                 
5 Elisa Frisoni (Italy)                                          
REL Clara Sanchez (France)                                       

Final 7-12
7 Willy Kanis (Netherlands)                                      
8 Diana Maria Garcia Orrego (Colombia)                           
9 Christin Muche (radnet.de)                                     
10 Anna Blyth (Great Britain)                                    
11 Kaarle Mcculloch (Australia)                                  
12 Daniela Grelui Larreal (Venezuela)                            
Women's Team Pursuit Finals Results and Final Classification
1 Russian Federation                        3.29.072 (51.656 km/h)
 Eugeniya Romanyuta                                           
 Olga Slyusareva                                              
 Anastasiay Chulkova                                          
2 Australia                                 3.30.675 (51.263 km/h)
 Belinda Goss                                                 
 Katie Mactier                                                
 Josephine Tomic                                              
3 Ukraine                                   3.30.434 (51.322 km/h)
 Svetlana Galuk                                               
 Lesya Kalitovska                                             
 Lyubov Shulika                                               
4 New Zealand                               3.35.274 (50.168 km/h)
 Catherine Cheatley                                           
 Joanne Kiesanowski                                           
 Alison Shanks                                                
5 Cuba                                                        
6 Italy                                                       
7 Drapac Porsche Development Program                          

Men's Madison

1 Peter Schep / Jens Mouris (Netherlands)                        

One lap behind

2 Joan Llaneras Rossello / Carlos Torrent Tarres (Spain)       10 pts

Two laps behind

3 Michael Morkov / Alex Rasmussen (Denmark)                    18 pts
4 Henning Bommel / Roger Kluge (Team Focus)                    12
5 Mariusz Wiesiak / Rafal Ratajczyk (Poland)                   12
6 Tim Mertens / Kenny De Ketele (Belgium)                       7
7 Juan Esteban Curuchet / Walter Fernando Perez (Argentinia)    4 
8 Milan Kadlec / Martin Blaha (ASC Dukla Praha)                 2
9 Cameron Meyer / Zakkari Dempster (Team Toshiba)               1
10 Alexey Shmidt / Ivan Kovalev (Moscow)                        1
11 Michael Friedman / Colby Pearce (Team Slipstream)             

Three laps behind

12 Luke Roberts / Graeme Brown (Australia)                      7 pts
13 Mark Cavendish / Bradley Wiggins (Great Britain)             5
14 Nikolay Trusov / Alexei Markov (Russian Federation)          4
15 Olaf Pollack / Leif Lampater (Germany)                       3
16 Ben Swift / Jonathan Bellis (Team 100% Me)                   2

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