Lizzie Armitstead saved the best until last to wrap up a classy points race victory at the Manchester World Cup on Saturday night.
The 20-year-old qualified well, winning her heat, then started steadily in the 80-lap final. Going into the seventh of eight sprints, she was in fourth place, with the Cuban Yumari Gonzalez Valdiviesoin the lead.
Armitstead started the seventh sprint from a long way out and held off a late surge from the Russian Evgeniya Romanyuta. That put the Great Britain rider into a three-point lead as the Cuban failed to finish in the first four.
That meant Armitstead just had to finish third or better to seal victory. However, she finished off in style, winning the sprint superbly.
The programme for the 2012 Olympic Games is set to be confirmed in December, with the points race among the races likely to be cut. However, the women’s team pursuit and Omnium events are set to be included. Armitstead is already a key part of the Great Britain women’s team pursuit squad. And she is in the frame for the Omnium – which includes a mix of sprint and endurance events held over five days – along with Anna Blyth. The points race is an Omnium discipline.