Commonwealth Games 2014: Only Scots pair fly British flag as Aussies rule the velodrome

Inquest starts as once all-conquering home riders are left behind by Australia – except Fachie and Maclean that is

Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome

Sir Chris Hoy slipped in the back door of his place last night just as the first rain of the Commonwealth Games began to fall. Once inside, he sat and watched Australia rain on the British parade. This was, with one raucously received exception, Australia's night, and with one day of racing left in the velodrome it is Australia who will almost certainly top the medal table.

First the exception, and it was one that almost blew the roof off Hoy's velodrome as Scotland's Neil Fachie and Craig Maclean, an old team-mate of the host, recovered from losing the first race of the para-sport sprint tandem against the favoured Australian pairing to win the next two, snatching the second with a lung-busting turn around the final bend, and take a second gold of the Games.

Their victory was celebrated by a karaoke session of Scotland's other anthem. Even Hoy looked close to tears as the Proclaimers "500 miles" echoed around the velodrome and Fachie, a partially sighted rider, hugged his family. Otherwise the happiest pit in the velodrome was the one adorned with the Australian flag.

At the races: Scotland’s Neil Fachie and pilot Craig Maclean (in blue) come from behind to beat Australia At the races: Scotland’s Neil Fachie and pilot Craig Maclean (in blue) come from behind to beat Australia It was another good session of track racing for one of the Sutton brothers, only it was the wrong one who went home happy in the eyes of those who had come to cheer on any and every rider from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Shane Sutton, Britain's head coach, is not a man to hold back when he feels criticism is due and he may have some harsh words to deliver to a number of his riders once everyone is back together in British colours. An honesty among the coaching staff, making it plain in public when they are not happy, has been a feature of the British set-up – earlier in the week Chris Newton, the endurance coach, said he was disappointed with rides by Laura Trott and Dani King, two of his record-breaking squad of pursuit riders.

Gary Sutton, Shane's big brother with whom he won Commonwealth gold back in 1978, is part of the Australian coaching set-up and saw his charge Annette Edmondson lead home a green-and-gold one-two in the 10km scratch race. Moments later, the imperious Anna Meares swept past Jess Varnish and into today's sprint final – another English scalp for the Australians. Varnish will ride for bronze.

Elinor Barker sneaked a gutsy bronze for Wales in the scratch but the more illustrious members of the British women's endurance squad trailed in the Australian wake. King was fourth, Scotland's Katie Archibald, a relative novice at this level, fifth, while Trott came in a distant 11th and Jo Rowsell was 19th.

Elinor Barker wins bronze Elinor Barker wins bronze "I'm gutted, obviously, because I am so competitive I want to win," said King. "It was Jo's first international bunch race so you can't ask much of her and look what she did yesterday [winning gold] and Laura has been under the weather."

Trott is sick after every race – the coaching staff habitually hand her a bag when she comes off the track. Habitually she collects a medal too, except she is running out of events here. Today she has her last on the track, the 25km points race. She is suffering with a kidney infection which kept her in bed for much of Friday, and faces a first major championship without a medal. After the track finishes she is due to ride the road race in support of Lizzie Armitstead. The programme here is not suited to her strengths, regardless of her fitness, but nevertheless it is a mark of the success she has already achieved at the age of 22 that going home with nothing for her well-stocked trophy cabinet would be a surprise and disappointment.

Laura Trott (in red) in the scratch race Laura Trott (in red) in the scratch race "I'm here now so I may as well ride," said Trott. "I definitely don't think I should have ridden [on Friday] – I really wasn't well at all. But today I felt it was good for me to get stuck in and see how my legs actually were. I got my tactics slightly wrong. The Australians are working really well together and we need to do that more."

This is not an Olympic programme being raced here, and Australia have the advantage in not being split up as the British are, yet there is plenty for Sutton Snr to ponder with both his men's and women's squad – and time to put things right ahead of Rio, as Britain invariably do. He will be encouraged by Barker's performance. It underlines the depth of the British endurance squad as the 19-year-old added a first individual medal to the two world team-pursuit titles she claimed with Trott and Co.

Anna Meares beats Jess Varnish Anna Meares beats Jess Varnish It was in this venue two years ago that Barker first rode with Trott and King in the World Cup. She impressed her team-mates then and yesterday she left them behind. "It was so close I didn't realise I had won a medal," said Barker. "I was in an awful position with two laps to go and I thought, 'I'm not going to make it to the front'. But I had the speed and I saw the line and knocked people out of the way and made it.

"That was one of the gutsiest rides I've ever done."

Peter Kennaugh won the Isle of Man's first medal of the Games, taking silver in the men's points race.

News
people
News
John Rees-Evans is standing for Ukip in Cardiff South and Penarth
news
Arts and Entertainment
Bianca Miller and Katie Bulmer-Cooke are scrutinised by Lord Sugar's aide Nick Hewer on The Apprentice final
tvBut Bianca Miller has taken on board his comments over pricing
Life and Style
Approaching sale shopping in a smart way means that you’ll get the most out of your money
life + styleSales shopping tips and tricks from the experts
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
peopleSinger posts pictures of nuptials throughout the day
News
in picturesWounded and mangy husky puppy rescued from dump
Sport
David Silva, Andy Carroll, Arsene Wenger and Radamel Falcao
football
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£20000 - £21000 per annum: The Jenrick Group: This high quality manufacturer o...

The Jenrick Group: Electrical Maintenance Engineer

£30000 - £35000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Electrical ...

Recruitment Genius: Photo Booth Host

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This company offers London's best photo booth ...

Recruitment Genius: Domestic Gas Service Engineers



£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Domestic Gas Service Engineers ...

Day In a Page

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'