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Day 1 wrap-up
Day 2 wrap-up
Day 3 wrap-up
Day 4 wrap-up
Day 5 wrap-up
Awesome Aussies looking to Athens
Medal Tally


Men's IP
Women's 500m TT
Men's 1000m TT
Men's Scratch
Women's IP
Men's Team Sprint
Men's Team Pursuit
Men's Points
Women's Points
Women's Sprint
Women's Scratch
Men's Madison
Men's Sprint



2002 WTC


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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

World Track Championships - CM

Stuttgart, Germany, July 30 - August 3, 2003

Event program and results

Day 4 Wrap: Aussies smash record; Gane gains; Slusareva too good

By Valkerie Mangnall in Stuttgart, Germany

Men's 4000m Team Pursuit

Aussies outdo themselves
Photo: © Hennes Roth
Click for larger image

Australia obliterated its own 4000m team pursuit world record by more than two seconds today and the riders believe they can slash another two seconds off in Athens next year. The quartet of Graeme Brown, Brett Lancaster, Luke Roberts and Peter Dawson overcame a false start to ride an amazing three minutes 57.280 seconds as Australia defended its world title in Stuttgart, Germany.

Their time was well inside the previous world mark of 3:59.583 set by Brown, Dawson, Roberts and Mark Renshaw at last year's Commonwealth Games in Manchester. Last year's world championship was won by Dawson, Lancaster, Roberts and Stephen Wooldridge with Wooldridge claiming another rainbow jersey today after riding two rounds this year.

Suggestions the record, set today in incredibly hot and humid conditions could stand for quite a while were met by declarations from the team said that they were determined to break it again next year. Australian sprint coach Martin Barras has already predicted it will take another world record to win in Athens.

"He believes the Olympic championship will be won in 3:55," Brown said. "I told him he was an idiot when he first said it but now I think it's quite possible. Athens is fast and we're fast so put the two together and 3:55 is quite a possibility."

Pitted against Great Britain in the ride-off for gold and silver, the Australians bounced back from a nervous start in which Lancaster went to ground when his rear disc wheel came loose.

"Browney's bike took ages to get into the start gate, and I'd been sitting in the saddle a bit too long so when we went I pulled my wheel," Lancaster said. "Lucky it happened then and not later."

The British outfit of Bryan Steel, Robert Hayles, Paul Manning and Bradley Wiggins rode 4:00.629, a time made all the more impressive given that Steel pulled out after 2km.

"I think he found his limit," British endurance coach Simon Jones said by way of explaining Steel pulling out. "The last two kilometres with three guys doing that workload is very close to the Australian performance, we're not that far behind so I'm really optimistic for next year and this year is about the Olympics."

Roberts said the threat posed by the British team helped spur the Australians on. "It was maybe in the back of our minds that the world record would be a possibility to take today," Roberts said. "Our biggest priority was to win first and we knew the Brits would ride a good time, they were capable of a four minute time so we would have to have gone close to the world record to win anyway. But to take two seconds off it, we couldn't have imagined that before today."

Men's Sprint

Head to head
Photo: © Hennes Roth
Click for larger image

Meanwhile, the rivalry between France's Laurent Gane and Australian Jobie Dajka took an interesting turn when the Frenchman added the men's sprint crown to the keirin title he won on Thursday. The pair have spent much of the year fighting it out on the Japanese keirin circuit, where Dajka had the upper hand, emerging with three wins to Gane's one.

The duo again found themselves head-to-head in the sprint gold medal ride after Dajka was forced to settle for silver in the keirin. Dajka narrowly won the first heat in 10.433 seconds but Gane was stronger in the next two.

"The first race in the final was my hardest race in the world championships here," Gane said. "The first race I simply wasn't fast enough. I waited too long and against an opponent such as Jobie, that came back on me. I'm pleased even more that I got through in the end."

Dajka said the 285m track took a bit of getting used to. "It's a little bit different," Dajka said. "At the start I struggled with it but towards the end I got the feel for it. The length of my sprint towards the end was getting shorter and shorter because I was getting more tired and by the end it was just lay it on the line and he just came around."

Dajka now turns his attention to tomorrow's final day of the championships, where he will take on the unfamiliar role of starter for the team sprint in the absence of Sean Eadie, who is injured. Dajka will lead out Mark French and Ryan Bayley.

"It's a bit of an unknown but the training times have been pretty good," Dajka said. "We'll see how we pull up and again put our best out there . in the morning we'll just get through and then we'll be on for sure."

German Rene Wolff beat Frenchman Arnaud Tournant in straight heats to take the bronze medal.

Women's 10 km Scratch Race

Olga again!
Photo: © Hennes Roth
Click for larger image

Russian Olga Slusareva backed up her victory in the women's points race by winning the 10km scratch race from Australia's Rochelle Gilmore and Adrie Visser of the Netherlands in a scrappy final lap.

"I changed my tactics. I looked to see who had the strongest nerves and then decided to race from the front," Slusareva said.

For Gilmore, coming second made her hungrier for victory in front of a home crowd in Melbourne at next year's championships. "I want to win next year and I'll be thinking about it from this day until the next time," she said.

Women's Sprint 1/4 finals

In the women's sprint, Great Britain's Victoria Pendleton made it through to tomorrow's semifinals, where she meets Svetlana Grankovskaya.

Natallia Tsylinskaya is on track for the sprint double, setting up a semi-final meeting with Mexico's Nancy Contreras Reyes, whom the Belarussian beat to win the 500m time trial on Thursday.