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Page last updated at 21:09 GMT, Friday, 5 November 2010

Brits win team pursuit golds at European Championships

European Track Cycling Championships
Venue: Pruszkow, Poland Dates: 5-7 November
Coverage: Live commentary on BBC 5 live sports extra (not available online) on Saturday from 1915 GMT, Sunday from 1745. Also live on British Eurosport

Katie Colclough
Colclough formed part of a new-look GB pursuit team

Great Britain won gold in the men's and women's team pursuit events at the European Track Championships in Poland.

Steven Burke, Ed Clancy, Jason Queally and Andy Tennant opened Britain's medal account by fending off Russia over 4km.

Wendy Houvenaghel, Katie Colclough and Laura Trott then beat Lithuania by over six seconds in their 3km final.

Britain took silver in the women's team sprint, while Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy was part of a trio that won bronze in the corresponding men's race.

Having clocked four minutes 01.953 seconds in qualifying, Clancy, Burke, Tennant and 40-year-old Queally had found their Russian opponents difficult to shake off over the first 2km of their decider.

However, the quartet pulled clear in the second half to win by almost four seconds in 4:00.482secs.


The new-look women's trio of Colclough, Houvenaghel and Trott were equally impressive - also topping the qualification timesheet before proving too strong for the Lithuanians.

Hoy, Jason Kenny and Matt Crampton were only quick enough to reach the bronze medal ride-off in Pruszkow.

Multiple world champion and four-time Olympic champion Hoy had this week played down expectation of European gold, instead highlighting the meeting's importance as the first qualifier for the 2012 Games in London.

However, the Scot and his team-mates did, at least, record the fastest time of the competition, improving on their 44.149secs qualifying mark to clock 43.968 and beat Poland to bronze. Germany, by contrast, could only achieve 44.066 as they won gold ahead of France in the final.

Sir Chris Hoy
Hoy and his team recorded the fastest time but had to settle for bronze

Victoria Pendleton, an Olympic gold medal in the individual sprint, and Jess Varnish had stopped the clock in 33.381 in qualifying for the women's team sprint.

But when they could only manage 33.586 in their final, France's time of 33.478 was good enough for gold.

Olympic qualification is decided by the Olympic Track Ranking, which is compiled by world governing body the UCI using the best results at the 2011 and 2012 World Championships, World Cup Classics in 2010-11 and 2011-12, and the last two continental championships.

Qualification for the three sprint events at London 2012 - individual, team and keirin - is via results in team sprint competitions over the next 18 months.

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see also
Geraint Thomas on the Euros
04 Nov 10 |  Cycling
Hoy and Pendleton win in Manchester
22 Sep 10 |  Cycling
Hoy and Pendleton set for Poland
24 Aug 10 |  Cycling
Pendleton will miss Delhi Games
19 Jul 10 |  Cycling
Hoy rules out Commonwealth Games
16 Jul 10 |  Cycling
New rules weaken Olympics - Hoy
20 May 10 |  Cycling

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