Oakley results at the UCI Track Cycling World Champoinships
Last week the UCI Track Cycling World Championships were on in Melbourne with spectators coming from far and wide to see the best track cyclist battle it out. It was the last major competition leading in to the London Olympics with the cyclists wanting to prove their ability. In the first night the Aussie Team with Oakleys Shane Perkins, Scott Sunderland and Matt Glaetzer took out the Men’s Team Sprint. The win was the first by Australia to the world men’s team sprint title since 1996.
A thrilled Perkins, who was knocked off his bike on Sunday when hit by a car, recovered to produce one of the rides of his career. “We came here wanting to do a personal best time for the team and we did that in the qualifying, and then to obviously to hear we were in the gold and silver ride off, our energy and excitement went up another level. It showed in that final we were pretty pumped. We knew we had the ability, we knew we had to bring our times down a little bit and we did that. Thanks to the guys for a fantastic ride, they did absolutely awesome,” Perkins said.
In the Men’s Team Pursuit the British team of Geraint Thomas, Ed Clancy, Peter Kennaugh and Steven Burke were just too good in the final and beat Australia, breaking the record posted at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
Oakley’s Aussies Jack Bobridge, Glenn O’Shea, Rohan Dennis and Michael Hepburn rode the third fastest time in history, 3 minutes 53.401 seconds, for the silver medal. Clancy rode first wheel to set up a lead for the British team, until the Australians led by 0.069 of a second at 2000 metres. The lead subsequently changed on each lap before Britain established a 0.324 of a second with 1000 metres left.
Bobridge drove the hosts in the last two laps but the roar of a 4000 strong home crowd wasn’t enough to help the dual defending champions bridge the gap.
“It’s very disappointing. We went over there and got one up on them on their home turf. They’ve come over here and kicked us back in the guts and beat us here,” Bobridge said. “We didn’t get beaten by a bad time at all. We rode out personal best and they broke a world record. We got beaten by a better team on the day and that’s just the way it is.
“It was world title and we lost. We definitely just have to rebound from here. Use it as positive energy. Go away and every day now we wake up looking to the games and put 100% into the pedals every day until we get back to their home turf and hopefully get one back on them.”
Close behind the Aussies in 3rd were our neighbours and fellow Oakley team New Zealand with Aaron Gate, Sam Bewley, Westley Gough, Marc Ryan.
In the Men’s Point race a late dash to gain a lap has given Oakley’s Cameron Meyer his third world points title. Meyer earned 20 points for gaining a lap, with three circuits left of the 160 lap event to place the Australian six points ahead at the final sprint. The roar of the crowd urged the Australian on after the 23-year-old attacked with around 12 laps left as he was 22 points behind Belgian Kenny de Ketele and 17 adrift of Great Britain’s Ben Swift. Meyer accumulated 33 points over the 40km, while Swift won the last sprint to win silver with de Ketele third. Meyer has won three world points titles in four years, with a second placing in 2011.
Our Kiwi Women’s cyclist Ali Shanks is also a world champion once again, after winning the 3000 metre individual pursuit. Shanks was nearly three seconds slower than her qualifying time, but it’s been enough to see off Great Britain’s Wendy Houvenaghel in the final. It’s given her the world title for the second time, after winning it in 2009.
“I’ve been world champ once before but it’s so hard to get and once you’ve had that feeling once you want it again even more and you want it more and more so I was absolutely stoked with my rides.”