Disappointment for British cycling team

First published in Sport

THERE was disappointment for Britain’s men and a bronze for Jess Varnish and Becky James on the opening day of the Track Cycling World Championships in Cali, Colombia.

Varnish and James claimed third in the women’s team sprint to rescue a poor day for Britain, the dominant track nation for some time, after the men’s team pursuit and team sprint squads failed to advance to their respective medal rideoffs.

Ed Clancy, Sam Harrison, Owain Doull and Jon Dibben finished a lowly eighth – Britain’s worst result in at least 15 years – in the fourman, four-kilometre event.

And London 2012 champions Phil Hindes and Jason Kenny combined with Kian Emadi to place fifth in the three-man, three-lap team pursuit.

Kenny has twice won Olympic gold in the event, but never the world champion’s rainbow jersey and Britain’s wait for a men’s team sprint world title will extend to 10 years at least.

Britain have not won the world title since 2005 – when Sir Chris Hoy, in Cali as a team mentor, was part of the squad – and for a third successive year they have now missed out on a medal.

Kenny, who will bid to defend his Keirin title today, tried to accentuate the positive after the 43.617 seconds ride.

‘‘It is frustrating for me,’’ the 25-year-old from Bolton said.

‘‘I’ve got a lot of medals in this event over the years, not many of them gold. We’ve got the Olympic gold medals, which is the main ones.

‘‘We’ve got the potential to dominate, or certainly to be competitive every time we go out and that’s where I’d like to be really.

‘‘We’re disappointed with the result, but the time itself and the way we rode wasn’t that bad.”

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