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GB end on high note as Ed Clancy wins gold

Ed Clancy

Clancy storms to omnium gold - UK users only

By Chris Bevan
BBC Sport in Copenhagen

Ed Clancy ensured Great Britain ended the Track Cycling World Championships on a high note by winning omnium gold on the final day in Copenhagen.

The 25-year-old Olympic team pursuit champion won out over five disciplines in a gruelling day, securing his first individual global title.

But Victoria Pendleton was unable to add the keirin title to the sprint crown she retained on Saturday.

She was pipped on the line in the final by Lithuania's Simona Krupeckaite.

GB finished second in the overall medals table behind Australia but won medals in all but two of the 10 events that will be fought out at the London 2012; the sprint, team sprint, keirin, team pursuit and omnium.

British Cycling's performance director Dave Brailsford said: "Are in good shape for the Olympics? Yes, we are in terrific shape.

"We just came here to ride those events and see where we are at, with relatively new line-ups in some of them.

"And we are very much in the mix in all of them, with plenty of depth across the board."

Sir Chris Hoy

Hoy reflects on eventful championships

The only two Olympic track events where Britain failed to get a medal in the Danish capital were the men's sprint and the women's team sprint.

In the former, defending champion Gregory Bauge - who narrowly beat Britain's Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy 2-1 in the quarter-finals - successfully defended his title with a 2-0 win over Australia's Shane Perkins in the final.

"We were fourth in the women's team sprint when we didn't expect a second ride, so that is a real positive for us," added Brailsford.

"And Hoy and Bauge are widely considered to be the best two sprinters here so that could maybe have given us a silver."

Pendleton, who broke Beryl Burton's British record of seven world titles this week, was expected to secure the ninth rainbow jersey of her career in the keirin, an event she is focusing on ahead of the Olympics.

Dave Brailsford

Brailsford disputes Pendleton keirin result

But the 29-year-old lost out by the narrowest of margins and an official appeal by the British team that she he had been blocked by Krupeckaite near the finish was turned down.

"We had clear evidence on film showing her come out of her lane on the final bend," Pendleton said.

"When it comes down to a photo finish like it did, that could be the difference between me winning and not - but the decision has been made.

"I am still really pleased with what I have achieved here. I wanted to win gold in the sprint and finish top five in the team sprint.

"The keirin is down to the luck of the draw and it is a difficult race to plan. I wanted to medal so I have fulfilled all my ambitions this week."

Instead, it was Clancy who topped the podium, in a victory that was some consolation for being part of the British squad that was pipped to gold by Australia in the team pursuit by the narrowest of margins in Friday's final.

His team-pursuit team-mates Steven Burke, Andy Tennant and Ben Smith were among the first to congratulate him.

Victoria Pendleton
Pendleton's protest about Krupeckaite's tactics was rejected

Clancy told BBC Sport: "I'd honestly have rather stood up there with the boys after the team pursuit, that was what we really worked hard for and I've had a great time working with them over the last few months.

"Having said that, it's my first individual medal of any colour in the world and one I didn't really think I would get. It just seems a bit bizarre.

"I felt like I had a hangover the day after the team pursuit because you just feel so down when you lose by such a small margin.

"I was supposed to be the team captain and it kind of felt all the boys had been let down because they didn't get what they wanted."

The omnium will be held in a different format at the Olympics when it will feature an extra elimination event and last the course of the programme rather than a single day.

I put myself up for the omnium at the start of the season but forgot about it

Ed Clancy

It is decided by adding together each rider's position from every event, with the lowest total winning.

Clancy got off to a storming start when he clocked the best time of 10.448 in the 200m sprint time-trial and finished 13th in the scratch race.

He was fourth-fastest in the 3km individual pursuit in a time of 3min 18.448sec.

A score of 25 points brought him fifth place in the points race and he made absolutely sure of victory with the best 1km time-trial time of 57.837 seconds.

"I knew I'd do a good 200m but not that good. I thought I would do alright in the 1km and the pursuit too but I certainly didn't think I'd win the kilo and get fourth in the pursuit

"The points race was the hardest 30 or 40 laps of my life. I had a bit of bad luck in the scratch race but I got a lucky break in the points race and decided to go for it.

"I must have had a 'Scream' mask on for most it though and I certainly wasn't saving anything for the 1km."

Clancy's preparation for the event was minimal; he had never ridden a flying 200m sprint beforehand and relied on advice from British sprinter Jamie Staff before he raced, and he is unsure whether he will try to combine it with the team pursuit at London 2012.

"I put myself up for the omnium at the start of the season but forgot about it and it was only two or weeks ago that they told me I was in this as well as the team pursuit," he explained.

"Those who know me know I put my heart and soul into the team pursuit. That is what gets me out of bed. I enjoyed myself today, so I'll have to think about it, but we have people like Chris Newton and Mark Cavendish who could ride a great omnium."

Britain's Lizzie Armitstead, who won silver medals in the women's omnium and team pursuit race, finished ninth in the women's points race in the other event of the day.

Keirin finish

Pendleton takes silver in keirin photo finish

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see also
Pendleton powers to sprint crown
27 Mar 10 |  Cycling
Hoy knocked out of world sprint
27 Mar 10 |  Cycling
GB men win silver in team pursuit
26 Mar 10 |  Cycling
Hoy claims 10th world track title
25 Mar 10 |  Cycling

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