Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Ebola - Keep Calm: Psychosis in Europe and the US as Disease Wreaks Havoc in Africa

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Algerian jihadists execute French hostage

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Violence returns to Bangui

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Liberia - Ebola crisis: Calls for health workers strike largely ignored

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola epidemic: Cases will 'rise above 9,000 this week', WHO says

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Nigeria: reports of ceasefire between government and Boko Haram

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Might #BringBackOurGirls have worked?

Read more

REPORTERS

Uruguay: President Mujica’s social revolution

Read more

ENCORE!

Quincy Jones on Michael Jackson and his love of France

Read more

Sport

UK men’s track cycling team take sprint gold

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-08-03

Britain rode to victory during the final men’s track cycling team sprint on Thursday, breaking its own world record to beat France for a second straight gold medal in the event on day six of the Olympic Games.

AP - Britain broke its own world record set earlier Thursday to win its second straight Olympic gold medal in the men’s team sprint.

The team of Philip Hindes, Jason Kenny and Chris Hoy scorched the pine wood surface of the velodrome to post a time of 42.600 seconds, bettering the mark of 42.747 they had set in the previous round. France won the silver medal with a time of 43.013 seconds.

Germany beat Australia to claim the bronze.

The only newcomer to the British team was Hindes, who replaced the retired Jamie Staff from the crew that won gold at the Beijing Games. Hindes gave the British team the lead after the first lap, and Kenny and Hoy only added to it while being cheered on by Princes William and Harry.

Hoy blew kisses to an overflowing crowd roaring its approval after crossing the finish line, and even gave the 19-year-old Hindes a good-natured shove after the ride of his life.

Even the soundtrack piped into the raucous velodrome was fitting: “The Boys Are Back in Town” played immediately after the race, and the theme from “Chariots of Fire” blared out to another cheer when the British team emerged for the medal ceremony.

The French team of Gregory Bauge, Kevin Sireau and Michael D’Almeida could only shake their heads at a British team determined to build on its cycling success.

Bradley Wiggins, a three-time Olympic gold medalist on the track, sent the nation into a tizzy with his Tour de France victory, and then captured gold in Wednesday’s time trial. His medal came after Elizabeth Armitstead won the silver medal in the women’s road race on Sunday.

It was clear that the new velodrome in the Olympic Park was fast from the onset.

The women’s world record was broken by Britain’s Victoria Pendleton and Jessica Varnish during qualifying, only for the Chinese pair of Gong Jinjie and Guo Shuang to lower the time.

The men’s qualifying heats merely toppled Olympic marks. China posted a time of 43.751 seconds in the first heat to successfully go off, and France lowered the time to 43.097. After a restart caused by a mechanical problem, Olympic rookie Hindes led the British team to a time of 43.065 seconds to qualify first.

The world record didn’t fall until teams were vying for spots in the finals. France posted a time of 42.991 to briefly set a new Olympic mark, but the British team tore over the track in a time of 42.747 seconds, breaking the record of 42.914 set by Germany at a World Cup race last December in Cali, Colombia.

It was a world record that wouldn’t stand much longer. The team’s epic ride in the final wrapped up a sixth career medal for Hoy, who won three gold medals in Beijing to become Sir Chris Hoy – he was knighted for the performance.

Unlike the team pursuit, where riders ride in a perfect line to establish the best possible aerodynamics, the sprint is all about raw power – and the British team have plenty. Each rider completes a lap as fast as possible, and medals can be won or lost for a thousandth of a second.

Or by the judges, as it turns out.

The Chinese team thought it had won Olympic gold in the women’s race, twice setting the world record along the way, only to be disqualified – the technical term is relegated – after their victory lap for making an illegal change when the second rider took over.

The German team of Miriam Welte and Kristina Vogel was elevated to gold. The Chinese team wound up with the silver medal, and Australia beat Ukraine for the bronze.

 

Date created : 2012-08-02

  • OLYMPIC GAMES 2012

    Britain's track cyclists bid to emulate Wiggins

    Read more

  • OLYMPIC GAMES 2012

    Britain's Wiggins rides to historic cycling gold

    Read more

  • OLYMPIC GAMES 2012

    First gold medal for Britain as women rowers triumph

    Read more

COMMENT(S)