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2006 UCI Track Cycling World Championships - CM

France, April 13-16, 2006

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Men's team sprint

Home nation success

By Mal Sawford in Bordeaux

France on their way
Photo ©: Mitch Friedman
(Click for larger image)

The French team of Bauge, Bourgain and Tournant set a blistering time in qualifying, courtesy of one of the fastest standing laps on record. Bauge’s 17.402 lead off had set the home team up for their 44.194, and in the final he backed up again with an offering of 17.477. On the other side of the track, however, Jamie Staff recorded his personal best effort of 17.420, putting the team from Great Britain marginally in front.

With the noise of the crowd already drowning out the commentator, the roar became even louder when the scoreboard showed Bourgain had put the French back in front; it was simply deafening when Tournant crossed the line to take the win in a sensational time of 43.969. The French superstar attributed part of the team’s success to the wonderful crowd support. “It was huge. I’d already lived it in ’98, but when we were on the start line and we had to wait for the Brit’s for a while, that lapse of time is enough to make you start thinking and doubting. The crowd realised it and really pushed us on. It was a huge factor and got us over the hump. It's very satisfying to win at home because this team is very young and no one expected much of us,” Tournant added. “This will boost the morale for the team for the rest of the weekend.”

Jamie Staff, Britain's new lead off rider, was delighted with the new look team’s efforts. “I was happy with the first ride; to come out and do a 17.6, but then to come out in the final and do a 14.42 I think it was...I was as amazed as anyone. I mean I really did grit my teeth, and put my back out too!” And Staff plans to go even faster, saying, “I still think a 17.0 is possible - that’s my goal, anyway.”

The preceding bronze medal match between Australia and the Netherlands was anticlimactic in comparison. The Dutch dipped under the 18 second barrier, but Tim Veldt, their number three rider never got on the wheel in front, and had to ride a virtual 750 metre time trial against the more polished Australians, with obvious results. Shane Perkins has slotted in well as the starter for the Aussies. “I’m pretty happy with my start times,” he said. “I did a 17.8 in Melbourne [at the Commonwealth Games], and I was hoping to go a bit faster than that tonight. I want to be the fastest Australian ever, but I guess Sean Eaddie’s still got that title.”

A 17.4 second lap might be a few years away for the youngster, though. “I don’t know, that’s pretty freaky. I’ve got plenty of time to do it, I’m still only 19, so hopefully next season I can go 17.7 and maybe we’ll be in the gold medal ride off soon.”


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Mitch Friedman/www.mitchophoto.com



1 France                                    44.194
 Grégory Bauge
 Mickaël Bourgain
 Arnaud Tournant
2 Great Britain                             44.407
 Chris Hoy
 Jason Queally
 Jamie Staff
3 Australia                                 44.591
 Ryan Bayley
 Shane John Kelly
 Shane Perkins
4 Netherlands                               44.747
 Theo Bos
 Teun Mulder
 Tim Veldt
5 Germany                                   45.050
 Robert Forstemann
 Maximilian Levy
 Stefan Nimke
6 Poland                                    45.269
 Lukasz Kwiatkowski
 Tomasz Schmidt
 Damian Zielinski
7 Spain                                     45.692
 Alvaro Alonso Rubio
 Ruben Donet Gregori
 Salvador Melia Mangriñan
8 China                                     45.708
 Lin Feng
 Yong Feng
 Zhang Lei
9 Japan                                     45.773
 Masaki Inoue
 Takashi Kaneko
 Kazunari Watanabe
10 USA                                      46.146
 Benjamin Barczewski
 Giddeon Massie
 Christian Stahl
11 Russia                                   46.152
 Denis Dmitriev
 Vladimir Kiriltsev
 Sergey Borisov
12 Canada                                   46.409
 Cam Mackinnon
 Yannik Morin
 Travis Smith
13 Ukraine                                  46.557
 Vitaliy Kulachkovskiy
 Yuriy Tsyupyk
 Andriy Vynokurov
14 Greece                                   46.742
 Athanassios Mantzouranis
 Vasileros Reppas
 Panagiotis Voukelatos
15 Czech Republic                           46.912
 Alois Kankovsky
 Michal Prokop
 Adam Ptacnik
DNS Venezuela

For gold and silver
1 France                                    43.969
 Grégory Bauge                                    
 Mickaël Bourgain                                 
 Arnaud Tournant                                  
2 Great Britain                             44.194
 Chris Hoy                                        
 Jason Queally                                    
 Jamie Staff                                      
For bronze
3 Australia                                 44.600
 Ryan Bayley                                      
 Shane John Kelly                                 
 Shane Perkins                                    
4 Netherlands                               45.999
 Theo Bos                                         
 Teun Mulder                                      
 Tim Veldt