Laura Kenny overcame early-race nerves to finish with an omnium flourish in Milton after securing her second gold medal of the TISSOT UCI Track World Cup season.
The four-time Olympic and seven-time world champion had gone nearly three years without competing in a World Cup but showed no signs of rustiness in Canada, adding omnium gold to team pursuit honours.
In fact her omnium performance was little short of textbook, scoring in four consecutive sprints in the points race after finishing in the top three in each of her first three events.
That added to the team pursuit title she won alongside Eleanor Dickinson, Katie Archibald and Elinor Barker, with the latter two pairing up to perfect effect with gold in the Madison.
While Laura’s husband Jason was not to miss out on the act, digging deep in the keirin as Great Britain left the second World Cup of the season with four gold medals to their name.
The final day in Milton also saw Ollie Wood and Mark Stewart add to their tallies, a silver medal in the Madison matching their individual accolades from the scratch race and omnium respectively.
Kenny the omnium maestro
January 2016 was the last time Laura Kenny competed in a World Cup but if there were any desire to ease back into action, she certainly didn’t show it.
Admitting she needed a couple of events to find her feet, third-place finishes in the omnium’s scratch and tempo races certainly weren’t a bad way to go about the task.
Then came a straight elimination shoot-out with Lizeth Salazar Vazquez, the Brit prevailing to close the gap to the Mexican to just two points heading into the points finale.
Canada you have been wonderful My first world cup since January 2016 and what a great time we have had. Team pursuit and Omnium gold— Laura Kenny (@LauraKenny31) October 29, 2018
I got given the opportunity at this world cup to ride an omnium. To say I was nervous would have been.. https://t.co/JC0zIwrMSP
From there Kenny came into her own, sprint points in intermediaries two, three, four, five and seven helping her cruise to 133 points – 18 points clear of nearest challenger Salazar Vazquez.
Now comes a whole new challenge: “All that’s left is an overnight travel home with a teething, full-of-cold one-year-old. Wish me luck.”
Wood and Stewart surf silver again
Wood and Stewart have made silver their own this season, with both winning that team pursuit medal in the World Cup opener in France, and then again in the omnium and points race respectively.
Indeed the pair had already done so once again in Canada but, thanks to their late Madison charge, few would have been as hard-earned as their last in Milton.
Holding on for a place on the podium after Denmark and the United States had each taken a lap, the British pair knew a late finish was needed.
No team could come close to besting the 28 sprint points they ascertained but it was the final ten that proved most significant of all, a lung-busting effort seeing the two dig deep and go from far out.
It proved vital too, pipping the United States’ Daniel Holloway and Adrian Hegyvary by three points – a feat they would not have achieved without winning the final sprint.
Kennys revel in another memorable weekend
Four gold medals were won by the Great Britain Cycling team in Canada with three of those returning to the Kenny household.
First came Laura’s efforts on the opening night, with she, Dickinson, Archibald and Barker proving unfaultable in the team pursuit.
Then it was Jason’s turn, eking his away into the keirin final before turning on the speed when it mattered most to snatch gold in a titanic tussle with Hugo Barrette.
Laura then wrapped up proceedings in the omnium but not before Archibald and Barker showed class of their own to win the Madison.
The two became national champions just a fortnight ago and proved exactly why, a dominant performance paving the way for glory in Milton.
The Track World Cup now takes a month-long break prior to heading to Berlin on November 30, before the Great Britain Cycling Team come back to the track at the Lee Valley VeloPark on December 14.