Britain's young pursuiters fourth as Russians march on

Points race, British Track National Championships 2011

British Cycling's next generation of team pursuiters finished out of the medals in fourth place at the Beijing track world cup yesterday.

Mark Christian, Sam Harrison, Joseph Kelly and Simon Yates stepped out of the Olympic Academy boot camp in to international competition and made it in to the bronze medal final.

The young team posted a time of 4-06.853 was three seconds slower than New Zealand who won bronze. The gold medal final saw another world class time posted by the Rusvelo team.

Riding with two of their strongest riders, Alexey Markov and Alexander Serov, the quartet stopped the clock at 3-57.699 to comfortably beat the Australian team. The Russian's continue to improve under tutelage of Heiko Salzwedel, and with a huge increase in funding.

The following day Sam Harrison rode in the individual pursuit where he qualified sixth fastest in 4-29.505.

Team GB also took a young sprint team on the long trip to Beijing. Rebecca James and Victoria Williamson, who has only just moved up to the senior ranks from the British junior squad. The pair were tenth fastest in qualifying in the team sprint, with a time of 34.654 seconds.

The pair then placed 19th and 20th in sprint qualifying in a huge field of 42 riders, meaning neither made it through to the match sprint rounds. Shuang Guo ran out winner, beating Simona Krupeckaite in the final.

The third round of the world cup continues tomorrow. The fourth and final round of the series is in London's Olympic velodrome in five weeks time.

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Simon Richardson
Magazine editor

Editor of Cycling Weekly magazine, Simon has been working at the title since 2001. He fell in love with cycling 1989 when watching the Tour de France on Channel 4, started racing in 1995 and in 2000 he spent one season racing in Belgium. During his time at CW (and Cycle Sport magazine) he has written product reviews, fitness features, pro interviews, race coverage and news. He has covered the Tour de France more times than he can remember along with two Olympic Games and many other international and UK domestic races. He became the 130-year-old magazine's 13th editor in 2015.