Published: 30 June 2019
Written by: Sportsbeat
Images: Lumix UK/TeamGB
Megan Barker and Jess Roberts saved the best for last at the European Games in Minsk as they capped off a memorable week with a stunning gold in the women’s Madison.
The resounding result took GB’s track cycling team’s medal tally to three for the week, after Roberts and Barker had earlier formed part of the team that took team pursuit silver, while the men claimed team sprint bronze.
But it’s that final golden day that finishes as the highlight in Belarus, for a cycling squad that has developed it’s ranks at the second European Games.
It was an especially significant win for Roberts and Barker, coming against the Netherlands’ Kirsten Wild – one half of a world title-winning team in Poland earlier this year – and Amber Van Der Hulst, while Russian duo Diana Klimova and Mariia Novolodskaia came third.
"We're shocked and really happy," Barker commented. "We rode well and got a good early lead and just kind of clung on for the finish.
"It felt like a big Games event when we went and tried on the kit, the Team GB kit is different to our British Cycling kit, so it makes it feel like a big thing.
"We've got confidence, within British Cycling it's competitive to even be picked to do a race, so when you get that opportunity you've got to make the most of it.
"For us to have this opportunity and win gives us confidence for the next time."
On the final day Roberts also finished fourth in the women's omnium, just one point out of a bronze medal position.
She, Barker, former Irish rider Josie Knight and Jenny Holl had already claimed an impressive pursuit silver earlier in the week, just missing out on gold to Italy.
Jack Carlin, six-time Olympic champion Jason Kenny and Ryan Owens claimed their sprint bronze on Thursday, finishing behind France and reigning world champions the Netherlands.