The third day of competition in the 2012 UCI World Masters Track Cycling Championships saw no less than nine world titles decided in sprint and pursuit events for men and women.
Once again, British riders were on the top step of the podium in the majority of the championships with three gold medals while the USA were next with two and then one each for Ireland, Trinidad, Denmark and Australia.
In other news from the day’s action, Charles McCulloch (GBR) set a new world hour record for the 50-54 age group with a distance of 47.96076 kilometres after lapping the track with consistent lap times that kept him ahead of the record throughout the ride.
Women's 35-39 pursuit
The gold in this event went to Irish rider Susie Mitchell of Ireland. Mitchell, who after having been a few hundreths of a second behind her Australian opponent Rebecca Wheadon (Australia) during most of the 2000 metres of the race, came back strongly over the closing laps to win by almost half a second. There was a Bronze medal for British rider Adel Tyson-Bloor (Great Britain) who beat Elisa Gianchino (South Africa) by two seconds after leading from start to finish.
1. Susie Mitchell, Ireland 2.36.286
2. Rebecca Wheadon, Australia 2.36.757
3. Adel Tyson-Bloor, Great Britain 2.40.916
4. Elisa Gianchino, South Africa 2.42.949
Women's 40-44 pursuit
Britain’s Emma Sainsbury-Munn won the gold medal in this age category after breaking her Australian opponent in a well controlled ride over the 2000 metres. With only tenths of a second between them for a long time, the Australian finally ran out of legs over the closing laps to park up and lose the pursuit match against the Brit by six seconds.
There was more good news for Britain in the Bronze medal final when Alison Holmes started the better of the two riders on the track and she went on to beat Alaina Gurski (USA) by almost two seconds to give Britain two riders on the podium.
1. Emma Sainsbury-Munn, Great Britain 2:40.848
2. Cheryl Hulskamp, Australia 2:46.643
3. Alison Holmes , Great Britain 2:45.726
4. Alaina Gurski, USA 2:47.679
Women's 45-49 pursuit
After recording a new world best of 2:34.829 in qualifying, Janet Birkmyre (GBR) won her second gold medal later that day against fellow Brit, Jayne Paine. In the ride off for gold over 2000 metres, Birkmyre quickly went into the lead and by the finish was almost four seconds up on Paine who was delighted with her Silver medal.
It was an all Irish final for the bronze medal where Orla Hendron (Ireland) beat Tonya Moran (Ireland) by a few tenths of a second after a battle where there was nothing between them throughout the 2000 metres and only the sprint at the end by Hendron clichéd the bronze medal.
1 Janet Birkmyre, Great Britain
2 Jayne Paine, Great Britain
3 Orla Hendron, Ireland
4 Tonya Moran, Ireland
Women's 50 plus pursuit
It was a decisive win for Annette Williams of the USA in the final for gold in this age category when the American caught Emi Wachi of Japan while the Bronze medal went to Finland’s Arja Scarsbrook who beat Jenni Nicholson.
1. Annette Williams, USA 2.38.560
2. Emi Wachi, Japan 2.45.372
3. Arja Scarsbrook, Finland 2.52.690
4. Jenni Nicholson, Great Britain 2.58.377
Men's 45-49 sprint
There was gold for Denmark in the Men's 45-49 Sprint competition when Bernhard Franzpotter managed to scrape though and beat the Australian Chris Murray in two rides to one to retain his sprint title in this age category.
After winning the first heat easily in quite a physical encounter, Franzpotter saw Murray squeeze past him in the second match to take it to a decider where the Dane made no mistake with another easy win from the front.
There was controversy however in the bronze medal final after Phil Houlton was disqualified after getting his second warning in the second match. The British rider had won the first match against Fabio Alberti but when both he and the Italian were given warnings in the second race, the British rider found he was out of the competition due to already having had a warning in an earlier race and the bronze then given Fabio Alberti.
1. Bernhard Franzpötter , Denmark 11.354 11.630
2. Chris Murray, Australia 11.584
3. Fabio Alberti, Italy
4. Phil Houlton, Great Britain
Men’s 50-54 sprint
It was an all Australian final in the Men’s Sprint where defending champion Geoff Stoker had far too much power for Gerard O'Connell and Stoker cruised to win gold yet again in this competition. The bronze medal was won by Ferruccio Veschetti in a walkover as his opponent for the race was unable to take to the track.
1. Geoff Stoker , Australia 11.803 11.517
2. Gerard O'Connell , Australia
3. Ferruccio Veschetti, Italy
Men's 55-59 sprint
This was the most explosive of all the competitions which finished with one of Great Britain’s most decorated masters rider Dave Le Grys out of the competition after two warnings saw him disqualified in the semi finals while his rival in that semi, Steve Cronshaw went on to win the Gold.
After having survived a crash which saw both Le Grys and Cronshaw on the deck during the deciding match of their semi final, Cronshaw came up against Rich Voss of the USA in the final for Gold. It was a tough battle for Cronshaw though who won the first match but then lost the second in a photo finish against the American.
It came down to a decider as did so many of the finals on the night and with Voss coming round him on the home straight, Cronshaw had to dig really deep to hold him off and win the Gold medal which he was clearly delighted with. The bronze medal went to Aron Seiken who because of the DQ of Dave Le Grys in the semi final, was a walkover.
Men's 60-64 sprint
It was Canada versus the USA in the final for gold in this race and it took all three matches for the medals to be decided so close were Robert Gérard-Louis (Canada) and Keith Macbeth (USA).
First across the line in Match A was the Canadian Robert but in match B, Macbeth made sure the curtain didn’t fall on his Gold medal hopes as he scraped past Robert to make it one all.
The rider from the USA then held his nerve in the decider to win that comprehensively. Marc Dangleterre of France only needed two rides to clinch the bronze medal against Australian Malcolm Clasohm.
1. Keith Macbeth,USA
2. Robert Gérard-Louis,Canada
3. Marc Dangleterre, France
4. Malcolm Clasohm, Australia
Men's 70 plus sprint
The final event to be decided on the night was the Men’s 70 plus sprint competition where defending champion Earl Henry of Trinidad needed only two rides against Leo Menestrina (USA) to retain his title. The bronze medal was also won in two straight rides by Italian Guido Lupo who beat John Mason of Britain.
1. Earl Henry, Trinidad and Tobago
2. Leo Menestrina,USA
3. Guido Lupo, Italy
4. John Mason, Great Britain
Tickets to watch
Tickets are now available at the door during the championships. Ticket prices are very modest with all day prices at £8 and £5 for concessions during the week and £10 and £5 for concessions for the final two days. All ticket holders will also receive a free souvenir programme together with a daily update sheet containing full details of the programme for each day.
Please note: The evening session for the World Masters will start at 6pm (not 7pm) on Wednesday.
Further information and results: www.cyclingmasters.com.