The Great Britain Cycling Team won two silver medals in the men’s and women’s team pursuits on day two at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Paris.
Laura Trott, Joanna Rowsell, Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald produced a fantastic effort but were denied a fifth-consecutive world title by a stunning display from Australia, who set a new world record in 4:13.683 to Britain’s 4:16.702 at the French national velodrome.
In the men’s final, an engrossing encounter saw Ed Clancy, Andy Tennant, Steven Burke and Owain Doull exchange the lead throughout the race with New Zealand.
But the Kiwi quartet edged the contest in the final kilometre in a time of 3:54.088 to Britain’s 3:54.687.
After a first defeat in the team pursuit since 2010, Rowsell said: "Definitely better (to lose) this year than next year.
“I was thinking (on the podium), 'Enjoy that while it lasts, girls, it's only going to last a year'."
Trott, previously unbeaten in the event - as were Archibald and Barker - added: "It's disappointing.
“We are used to being on the top step so it was a different feeling. But we rode a PB, quicker than we've ever been before at sea level, and for us that is a massive step.
"It also shows we have work to do. You have to have four girls going good on the same day. And they did.”
After a huge improvement from the 2014 world championships, when Great Britain slumped to eighth, double Olympic champion Ed Clancy said: "It was only a month ago Burkey was lying in the road with a broken collarbone, Doull was cut to ribbons (after being involved in the same crash) and I didn't think we were coming here.
"We had a shocker of an event (in 2014). Understandably we got a fair bit of flack for that. It was a massive improvement.
"Shane said to us this morning, irrespective of what happens today we can do Rio now - and he's right. There's more to come.
"We can't guarantee we'll get out and win, but we've got a chance now and we believe we've got a chance."
After qualifying second fastest behind Australia last night, it was Canada who awaited the British quartet in round one of the women’s event.
Opting to make no changes, Trott, Rowsell, Barker and Archibald were nearly a second faster than their North American opponents to secure a place in the gold-medal final.
There they met Annette Edmondson, Ashlee Ankudinoff, Amy Cure and Melissa Hoskins who were in scintillating form, already leading before Rowsell dropped out at the halfway point and going on to set a new world best that previously belonged to Great Britain.
No changes were forthcoming in the men’s team, who had also qualified in second. Victory over Germany in round one booked them a place in the final against fastest qualifiers New Zealand.
The Kiwis started quicker but at the 3000 metre-mark Great Britain had turned the tie on its head, only for New Zealand’s Pieter Bulling, Regan Gough, Dylan Kennett and Alex Frame to deliver a final twist.
In the keirin, Jason Kenny was knocked out in the first round despite a battling performance in the repechage.
In the women’s 500m time trial, Katy Marchant was 13th in her world-championships debut, Victoria Williamson behind her in 15th.
Matt Gibson was another debutant and the 18-year-old impressed, finishing sixth in the men’s scratch race.
The championships continue on Friday.