The Great Britain women’s junior pursuit team of Elinor Barker, Lucy Garner and Amy Roberts rode to European track championship gold in Portugal yesterday afternoon.
In a nail-biting final against a Russian squad they outqualified by five hundredths of a second, the trio overhauled their rivals in the final thousand metres to clock 3-33.921.
The result underlines the improvement the trio have made: twelve months ago, they were two seconds slower and beaten to the bronze medal by France.
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It is Barker’s second gold in as many days after winning the individual pursuit on Tuesday, while Garner now has a blue-and-starry jersey to accompany the world champion’s rainbow one in her wardrobe.
Rotherham roars to kilo win
In the junior men’s kilo, Briton Matt Rotherham rode to the biggest win of his career, stopping the clock at 1-03.860.
He’s one to keep an eye on: as a 16 year old, Rotherham beat Olympic bronze medallist Steven Burke and Sam Harrison to win the senior men’s kilo title at last September’s national track championships.
After qualifying second with 10.619, the Bolton-born teenager also has a good shot at gold in the junior men’s sprint.
Silver for James and Williamson
In the women’s U23 team sprint, Great Britain pair Becky James and first-year senior Victoria Williamson took silver, beaten by a second by the Russians.
The U23 men’s sprint trio of Kian Emadi, Pete Mitchell and Callum Skinner qualified third fastest, but missed out on bronze after being beaten by Poland.
Dibben finishes third
In the junior men’s 3km individual pursuit, defending champion Jonathan Dibben came away with bronze.
After qualifying third quickest in 3-21.470, missing out on a gold medal ride-off by half a second, he easily dispatched of his Russian opponent.
Compatriot Sam Lowe placed 17th.
European U23 and junior track championships
Junior women’s team pursuit
1. Great Britain 3-33.921
Elinor Barker, Lucy Garner, Amy Roberts
2. Russia 3-34.326
3. Italy 3-34.546
4. Poland 3-36.754
Junior men’s 1km time trial
1. Matt Rotherham (Great Britain) 1-03.860
2. Alexander Dubchenko (Russia) 1-03.923
3. Jakub Vyvoda (Czech Republic) 1-04.442
Junior men’s individual pursuit final
1. Tom Bohli (Switzerland) 3-19.515
2. Nils Schomber (Germany) 3-20.567
3. Jon Dibben (Great Britain) 3-22.703
4. Dmitry Strakhov (Russia) 3-26.678
U23 women’s team sprint
1. Russia 33.678
2. Great Britain 34.687
U23 men’s team sprint
1. Germany 44.480
2. France 45.788
3. Poland 45.005
4. Great Britain 45.181
Kian Emadi, Pete Mitchell, Callum Skinner