Cycling: Maclean in hot seat for sprint gold

Bradley Wiggins may have made his last appearance on the boards for two years, but the evidence of the World Cup meeting which ended in Manchester yesterday is that British track cycling remains in excellent shape.

Following the victories of Chris Hoy in the one-kilometre time trial on Friday and the men's 4,000 metres pursuit team on Saturday, the men's sprint team of Craig Maclean, Jason Queally and Hoy won a third gold for Britain yesterday. Added to the four silver medals they won over the weekend, it gave Britain overall victory in a round of the World Cup for only the second time and put the team in good heart for the World Championships in Los Angeles in March.

Having set the third-fastest time ever by a British team during qualifying, Maclean, Queally and Hoy led Poland all the way in the final to win by one and a half seconds and make up for the disappointment they suffered in last summer's Olympic Games. It was a particularly brave performance by Maclean, who resumed training recently following a virus and in the morning suffered a rib injury and had to have several splinters removed from his buttocks after falling in qualifying for the Japanese keirin.

"It didn't exactly lay the ghost of Athens, but it means that we'll go to the World Championships reflecting on a victory in our last outing rather than a defeat," Hoy said. "It's an event where you have to have all three riders firing on the same day and that's what we achieved today."

Rob Hayles' chances of adding to his team pursuit gold and individual pursuit silver probably ended when Wiggins, his bronze medal-winning partner in the madison in Athens, decided he had to fly to Australia yesterday to begin his road season next weekend in the Tour Down Under. Wiggins will concentrate on road racing for the next two years, but will return to the track in time for the Beijing Olympics.

Steven Cummings, making his madison debut, took Wiggins' place but his inexperience was reflected when he fell in both qualifying and the early stages of the final, after which he needed stitches in a leg injury. However, it was a crash involving Cummings' highly experienced partner that finally put paid to the Britons' hopes.

Hayles, high up on the banking, was about to hand over to Cummings when the Spaniard Miguel Alzamora, changing his line, thumped into him from behind. Three other riders were brought down, but it was Hayles who came off the worst, damaging his hip and arm. Although he will have to take two weeks off, the injuries are soft tissue - he had to have a five-inch splinter surgically removed from his arm and needed eight stitches - and should not unduly hamper his preparations for the World Championships. Alzamora, who later apologised to Hayles, was warned for dangerous riding.

"It definitely wasn't my fault this time," a bruised and battered Hayles said, referring to the crashes he suffered in this event in both the Sydney and Athens Olympics. "I just didn't see him coming. I had my hand out for the changeover and then I was hit. I was at the top of the curve, so it was a long way down."

Victoria Pendleton was unable to add to her two silver medals when she was eliminated from the keirin in a repêchage, but there was a highly encouraging performance by Nikki Harris, aged 18, who finished in fifth place in the scratch race on her World Cup debut.

Dave Brailsford, Britain's performance director, was delighted with his team's work. "Nearly every rider performed to the top of their ability," he said. "We came here knowing that we had a chance of winning and it's particularly pleasing to do it in front of a home crowd. It's been a real demonstration of our professionalism."

Arts and Entertainment
tvThe C-Word, TV review
Arts and Entertainment
The Ridiculous Six has been produced by Adam Sandler, who also stars in it
filmNew controversy after nine Native American actors walked off set
Sport
Danny Jones was in the Wales squad for the 2013 World Cup
rugby leagueKeighley Cougars half-back was taken off after just four minutes
Life and Style
The original ZX Spectrum was simple to plug into your TV and get playing on
techThirty years on, the ZX Spectrum is back, after a fashion
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

Recruitment Genius: Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Stores Keeper

£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...

Recruitment Genius: Claims Administrator

£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developer - C# / ASP.NET / SQL

£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk