Great Britain win gold in four-man event

GREAT BRITAIN have won the team pursuit gold in a world record time on the opening day of the Track Cycling World Championships, edging out fierce rivals Australia, in Melbourne.

In the four-man, four-kilometre event Ed Clancy, Pete Kennaugh, Geraint Thomas and Steven Burke recorded a time of three minutes 53.295 seconds to claim a first world title since Manchester in 2008.

Australia’s team of Glenn O’Shea, Jack Bobridge, Rohan Dennis and Michael Hepburn were second in 3mins 53.401secs, just outside the previous world record - 3mins 53.314secs set by Britain when they won gold in the Olympics in 2008.

In the bronze medal ride-off, New Zealand clocked 3:57.592 to finish ahead of Russia (3:59.237).

“I didn’t think we’d ride that time,” said Thomas, who was part of the Olympic-winning team in 2008.

“I am surprised that we broke the world record.

“It was only in the last few days that we thought ‘we’re going to get close to this’.

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“It’s a great day.”

Elsewhere, former Mildenhall Cycling Club member Victoria Pendleton and her partner Jess Varnish missed out on a medal in the two-woman, two-lap team sprint.

The world record, previously held by the duo, was smashed by Germany in qualifying and the pair of Kristina Vogel and Miriam Welte improved on that time in the final to win in 32.549.

Australia’s Anna Meares and Kaarle McCulloch finished in the silver medal position in 32.597, while China’s Gong Jinjie and Guo Shuang (32.870) won bronze. Varnish and Pendleton (33.160) were fourth.

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