Uci World Track Cycling Champs - Day 5 Wrap

Postby Melissa_Theuriau on Mon 30/Mar/09 9:55am

New Zealand completed their most successful campaign at the UCI World Track Cycling Championships that finished in Pruszkow, Poland on Sunday.

They were out of the medals on the final day with defending champion Hayden Godfrey finishing seventh in the five-event omnium and Lauren Ellis 12th in the women’s points race.

The BikeNZ squad finished with three medals and a fifth placing which surpassed the two medals won at Japan in 1990 with Karen Holiday and Madonna Harris, at Berlin in 1999 to Sarah Ulmer and Anthony Peden and in Melbourne in 2004 to Ulmer and Greg Henderson.

It unearthed another world champion in Alison Shanks who followed in Ulmer’s footsteps with victory in the women’s individual pursuit while New Zealand scored their first medal in the men’s team pursuit that followed on from the bronze medal won at last year’s Beijing Olympics.

“Overall I am satisfied with the team performance,” said BikeNZ High Performance Director, Mark Elliott. “I am extremely proud of how the female programme performed with two medals from such a young developing team. There’s a real culture within this group that is always looking for gains.”

Elliott said the aim had been to build on the performances at the Beijing Olympics throughout the team.

“We were looking to make gains and take the step to the next level – both on and off the track. We were looking for consistently high performance and we wanted to take a step forward with our support systems, our recovery protocols, data capture as well as benchmarking against other key programmes.

“I believe we have achieved that goal.

“We always knew that Alison (Shanks) had the ability to keep improving and that she could step into that exclusive club of sub 3:30 minute pursuiters.

“Under our women’s coach Dayle Cheatley there was a clear indication at the world championships of the success of the Power to Podium programme. Jaime Nielsen has stepped out of rowing four months ago and is showing enormous potential while Lauren Ellis, who is a two-time world junior medallist, is a superb prospect. And there’s a further group that will challenge these riders in the next two to three years.”

He said the aim of the men’s pursuit this year was to build depth without losing performance and head coach Tim Carswell had achieved their medal goal.

“They really wanted to make the gold medal ride but that came down to a slightly slower start and they were only 6/10ths away from their goal. It was special to finally achieve our first men’s team pursuit medal at the world championships.”

Elliott said the support team had worked hard on optimising of marginal gains made in key areas of preparation and recovery.

“The commitment of the coaching and support staff has been nothing short of phenomenal. They set themselves world class best practice which is a key part of our overall performance.”

Godfrey started well in today’s Omnium, with a win in the 200m time trial against an exceptionally strong field. He placed eighth in the scratch race, 10th in the individual pursuit, 16th in the Points race and fifth in the Kilometre Time Trial.

“Hayden missed a key break in the scratch race and was not quite on song in the pursuit which proved costly after he looked in such good form leading up to the championships.”

Australian Leigh Howard won the Omnium from Canada’s Zach Bell.

Earlier Lauren Ellis (Tinwald), a member of the medal winning team pursuit, finished 12th in the women’s 25km Points Race.

She had an enterprising ride, and featured in four breakaway attempts, but her final effort to get a lap on the field sapped any remaining legs and she faded on the last two sprints.

A number of the team are heading directly to North America or Europe to join professional roach teams for the northern hemisphere summer.

Results: Omnium:
200m time trial:

Hayden Godfrey (NZL) 10.502, 1;
Tim Veldt (NED) 10.534, 2;
Zach Bell (CAN) 10.756, 3.

7.5km Scratch:
Robert Bartko (GER) 1,
Leigh Howard (AUS) 2,
Volodymyr Diudia (UKR) 3.
Godfrey 8.

3000m individual pursuit:
Diudia 3:17.055, 1;
Taylor Phinney (USA) 3:17.387, 2;
Artur Ershov (RUS) 3:19.501, 3.
Godfrey 3:23.563, 10.

15km Points:
Veldt 8 points, 1;
Howard 8, 2;
Diudia 7, 3.
Godfrey 0, 16.

Kilo Time Trial:
Veldt 1:03.089, 1;
Phinney 1:03.458, 2;
Howard 1:03.533, 3.
Godfrey 1:04.736, 5.

Overall points:
Howard 19, 1;
Bell 21, 2;
Veldt 24, 3.
Godfrey 40, 7.

Women’s 25km Points Race:
Georgia Bronzini (ITA) 18 points, 1;
Yumari Gonzalez Valdivieso (CUB) 15, 2;
Elizabeth Armitstead (GBR) 13, 3.
Lauren Ellis (NZL) 3, 12.
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