2021 TRACK CYCLING WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKEND RECAP
Take a look at the final three days of racing at the 20221 Track Cycling World Championships in Roubaix, France. For a look a day 1 and 2 read our recap. Learn more about the Track Cycling World Championships at uci.org.
Sporting a prominent handlebar moustache, American rider Ashton Lambie won gold in the men’s pursuit at the track cycling world championships on Friday. The 30-year-old from Nebraska was runner-up at the event in 2020 but Friday he beat rising Italian star Jonathan Milan in the final, while Ineos rider Filippo Ganna took bronze after his shock failure to make the final. Lambie raced gravel then came to the track later and made the headlines in August by breaking the 4km, 4 minute mark, albeit at altitude in Mexico.
In the late action, Britain bagged their first gold when double Olympic gold medallist Katie Archibald won the multi-discipline women’s Omnium. Germany’s Emma Hinze then retained her 2020 sprint world title edging compatriot Lea Sophie Friedrich, coming from behind right on the line. Earlier Jeffrey Hoogland’s sizzling 58.418 second ride won gold in the men’s 1km time trial after France’s Benjamin Thomas won the 160-lap men’s points race. At a packed Roubaix indoor stadium, the Dutchman Hoogland was over a second faster than 23-year-old Nicholas Paul of Trinidad, who also broke one minute in 59.791 seconds, only to watch Hoogland set out last in an event where riders race the clock solo one after the other.
The 40km points race contains 16 sprints and Thomas had been trailing by some distance to Belgian veteran Kenny De Ketele before a storming finale after drawing level with 20 laps to go.
“I know him and I doubted I’d catch him because he’s a foxy one,” Thomas said of De Ketele.
“I knew he was going to make my life hard so I just went all in and the crowd got behind me.”
Kirsten Wild and Amy Pieters of the Netherlands clinched their third women’s Madison title at the world track cycling championships on Saturday as the tournament became a showcase for the sport’s veterans. The 39-year-old Wild and her teammate, 30, had also dominated the event in 2019 and 2020. French pair Clara Copponi and Marie Le Net took second place just as they did last year. Victory was a welcome relief for the Dutch who were fourth at the Tokyo Olympics in the event which takes place over 120 laps and features 12 sprints.
Germany’s Lisa Brennauer took the women’s individual pursuit crown with the 33-year-old holding off compatriot Franziska Brausse, 22, by more than four seconds. The Olympic champions in team pursuit swept the podium with Mieke Kroeger grabbing a bronze. Lea Sophie Friedrich, also of Germany, defended her 500m title in a time of 33.057 seconds. Russian duo Anastasiia Voinova, a two-time world champion, and Daria Shmeleva filled out the podium.
Highly-rated British rider Ethan Hayter claimed the Omnium with the 23-year-old Londonder seeing off New Zealand’s Aaron Gate and Elia Viviani of Italy, the 2016 Olympic champion. Meanwhile, Italian riders at the championships lost bikes worth 10,000 euros ($11,600) each to thieves, local authorities told AFP. The local authorities said the bikes disappeared late on Friday or early on Saturday, but did not say how many had been stolen.
“They forgot the recommendation to leave the bikes in the velodrome until the end of the championships,” Yannick Gomez, director of the departmental board for public safety, told AFP. Competition organizers told AFP all the racers who lost bikes had already finished their participation. They also said the thieves took road bikes as well as track bikes, including some belonging to star time trialist Filippo Ganna.
Dutch rider Harrie Lavreysen took gold in the marquee men’s sprint event at the track cycling world championships in a packed Roubaix indoor velodrome on Sunday, beating his compatriot Jeffrey Hoogland in the final. Lavreysen, 24, won the same event in both Poland 2019 and Berlin 2020 making him a triple world title winner in this key event of the championships. He also beat Hoogland at Tokyo for the Olympic medal and at the recent European championships.
On the final day of competition, Lotte Kopecky of Belgium won the women’s points race. It was quite a feat as she pushed British ace Katie Archibald into second and nine-time world champion Kirsten Wild of the Netherlands on Sunday. It was also Wild’s last race as she retires from the track aged 39 having also won the Madison here. International Cycling Union boss David Lappartient was present to give her a send-off speech.
In the final race of the championship, Italian veteran, Elia Viviani, who came to Roubaix with world silver and bronze medals as well as an Olympic gold medal, finally added a rainbow jersey to his collection. Viviani outsprinted Portuguese rider Iuri Leitao when they were the last two riders standing.
Danish duo Lasse Norman Hansen and Michael Morkov won the men’s madison to add to their Tokyo title in an epic 50km 200-lap race with 20 sprints. Lea Sophie Friedrich won the other final on the closing day, taking the women’s Keirin.
RBA/AFP Photos: Bettini