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Page last updated at 23:24 GMT, Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Great Britain fail to claim gold in cycling Worlds

Sir Chris Hoy

Men's sprint team claim bronze medal

Track Cycling World Championships 2010
Venue: Ballerup Super Arena, Ballerup, Denmark
Dates: 24-28 March
Coverage: Live on BBC Two, red button and BBC Sport website

By Chris Bevan
BBC Sport in Copenhagen

Great Britain have failed to land a gold medal on a frustrating first day of the Track Cycling World Championships in Copenhagen.

Northern Ireland's Wendy Houvenaghel took silver in the women's individual pursuit event.

But Sir Chris Hoy must wait for his 10th world track title as Britain had to settle for a bronze in the men's team sprint.

Mechanical problems dogged Hoy and his team-mates Jason Kenny and Ross Edgar.

A pedal snapped off Hoy's bike as he lined up for their heat with Australia and Kenny's bike needed attention before the start of their race-off for third with China.


Chris Newton also just missed out on bronze in the men's points race, finishing fourth and failing to land a medal by just one point despite a brave effort on the final lap.

But expectations were highest in the team sprint, with Hoy looking to make a winning return at his first major championships since he collected three gold medals at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

The spanner in the works was expected to come from the French team, the defending champions, but instead Britain's hopes were hit seconds before the race began, the pedal shearing off as Hoy tried to fix his foot into place.

"I've never had a pedal snap off on me before," Hoy said.

"As I rolled up to the start and stuck my foot in, it just came off.

"It is actually good that it happened then because if it happened off the start it could have been nasty.

"A shard of metal came off and could have gone up my leg."

Sir Chris Hoy fixes his shoe after his pedal broke
Hoy suffered disappointment when his pedal broke before the race

After a long delay, during which Kenny and Edgar had to stay in their start gates, Hoy's bike was fixed but he was given little time to settle before the race started.

Britain's eventual time of 43.802 seconds was not good enough to make the gold final, with France and Germany both faster in the final heat.

Britain recovered to take bronze ahead of China in an improved time of 43.590 seconds, but surprise winners Germany (43.433s) and runners-up France (43.453) were again both quicker in the race for gold.

Hoy's next chance of a rainbow jersey will come on Thursday in the men's keirin, and he will also go for gold in the men's sprint that concludes the World Championships on Sunday.

Earlier, Houvenaghel won Britain's first medal at Copenhagen, losing out to Sarah Hammer of the United States, who powered away from her in the second half of their 3,000m race.

But Newton was denied a place on the podium, finishing a single point behind Milan Kadlec of the Czech Republic in the race for bronze.

Teenage British duo Jess Varnish, 19, and Becky James, 18, competing in their first senior World Championships, finished 12th and 16th respectively in the women's 500m time trial - which is no longer an Olympic event.

It was Australia who dominated the first day, with Anna Meares winning the 500m time trial and Cameron Meyer winning the points race.

Britain will hope for better fortune on day two when, as well as Hoy's challenge in the keirin, Houvenaghel will join Lizzie Armitstead and Jo Rowsell to try to defend their women's team pursuit crown and Vicky Pendleton and Jess Varnish go for gold in the women's team sprint.

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see also
'Drive and focus' spurs on Newton
24 Mar 10 |  Cycling
Hoy back to head GB bid at Worlds
23 Mar 10 |  Cycling
Veteran Queally earns GB call-up
12 Mar 10 |  Cycling
Hoy prioritises gold over record
22 Dec 09 |  Cycling
Cycling shake-up hits British duo
10 Dec 09 |  Cycling
GB stars race to three more golds
01 Nov 09 |  Cycling
GB women win world pursuit gold
26 Mar 09 |  Cycling
Hoy to miss World Championships
03 Mar 09 |  Cycling
Crash ends keirin hopes for Hoy
14 Feb 09 |  Cycling
Get into cycling in the UK
23 Mar 10 |  Get Involved

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