Commonwealth Games 2006
Melbourne - Track Competition
Day 3 - Sprint rounds & Finals
Pendleton smashes Games Record in Qualifying and goes on to take Gold
Gold medal ride-off saw the World Sprint Champion against the Olympic
Champion (in the 500m Time Trail) in a nail biting race. Anna had the lead
as they roll out, but Pendleton powered through in the back straight as they
approached the bell. Anna tried to come back and it had to go to a photo to
make the decision. Pendleton took the first heat in 11.822 seconds at a
speed of 60.903 km/h.
the second heat the crowd went wild in support of the Australian, in her
attempt to force a third heat. Pendleton took the front as Anna Meares moved
round at the bell to take the win on the line in a time of 12.001 seconds to
force a third heat.
The third and final heat caused the crowd to make ever more noise in their support for Anna Meares. She could not beat England’s Victoria Pendleton though. The current World champion narrowly defeated the current Olympic champion, to win gold.
really, really happy, this was my main event,” said Victoria
sprint is a gamble, always very close, so I feel great about the win.
was really annoyed with myself after the second sprint."
how this win compared to her win in the Worlds Victoria added “Athens
was really bad for me in terms of underperforming. At the Worlds I rode the
final just after the men had won the pursuit. It really inspired me to go
for the win, I thought wow, I really want that too. The moral is really high
in the team, it is great to come to these championships and to feel the
euphoria that the Australians experience all of the time."
reply to how important it was for the England team to get a gold medal
Pendleton said “after
Manchester where we scored a lot of silvers, we were very disappointed. We
really knew we had to come here and win”
did the almost similar position to Manchester being forced up against the
boards by a Meares feel? “I
am so stupid, I am sure when people watch that on TV and see what happens
that they cringe. When you’re out there though you are so focused on what
you are doing, you just get yourself in these situations. I am still
learning, I have only been competing at this level for 4 years and I still
have a lot to learn”
is coached by Craig Maclean and managed by Shane Sutton. Had there beenany
words of wisdom before the final ride. “He
said, you know you can do it. This is your last ride just go out there and
you ever see yourself switching to the road in a Sarah Ulmer fashion? “There
has been some discussion around that. I would quite like to be an endurance
rider on the track and compete in the Points and Scratch race. I have won
that (scratch race) in World Cups before without really training
specifically for the. I am not saying that I have done everything and that I
want to give up sprinting but I would like to try other disciplines. I have
never raced on the Road I did a couple of criteriums when I was a lot
younger but nothing serious. My goals is 2008 on the track, I have many
small goals before then that I want to achieve and I am just chipping away
at them and now of course there is 2012 in London, I want to be there
competing but not sure what I will be riding by then.”
Meares said "I gave it absolutely all I had. I really wanted to come home with the
gold, but white gold medal will have to do, Kerrie’s got some rose gold.”
Victoria’s win, “she's a sensational athlete, I really want to beat her next time; that
was a fantastic race for Vicky. She’s the reigning World Champion and you
have to give credit where it’s due. I hope to have a crack at her again in
about the medals, the Meares sisters were on form “they are gorgeous, this chain is
different from the
ribbon,” said Anna. “They
look like a really big necklace and I feel like someone from 'da
” Kerrie added.
Meares spoke about taking
the Bronze medal “after
the second round with Anna I put everything into it. I almost heaved
afterwards. I can’t complain, I just need to pick up a bit more speed and
form for the World Championships”. On losing the Commonwealth
not gone forever, I am looking forward to how much improvement I can make
over the next two years in the run up to the Olympics. I know that there is
improvements to make for example I am working on being more aerodynamic to
gain that extra second. I’ve done my best that’s part of racing, You
have to loose to become stronger. I am really looking forward to the future.”
sisters have a busy time ahead with personal arrangements, as well as with
the forthcoming World Track Championships in a couple of weeks. Anna plans
to marry Mark Chadwick in May and will take some time off for her honeymoon
before the European track season starts in September.
the first heat for the sprint off for Bronze, Williams lead out Kerrie
Meares. At the bell Kerrie came round the outside to take the first heat in
12.457 at 57.798 km/h.
the second heat Kerrie Meares took the front and kept a clear gap between
however Williams tried to come through forcing Kerrie to dig in to take the
win on the line in a time of 12.074 seconds to take Bronze.
Williams commented on her Sprint Final ride: “I gave everything I had. I knew
coming in to this, I was up against the current World Champion, the current
Olympic Champion and Current Commonwealth Games Champion. There is no better
competition, there’s not better standard anywhere. I gave everything and I
can’t really complain.”
first semi-final was a clash of the Australian Meares sisters. On the
qualifying form Anna had the strongest chance of taking the win. Kerrie lead
them out for the first two laps but at the bell Anna wound it up to snatch
the first heat in the best of three in a time of 12.014 seconds.
second all Australian contest saw the sisters did their trade mark cat and
first heat was restarted due to Kerrie touching the side barrier whilst
trying to perform on of her trade mark track stands. Anna was given the
advantage in the rerun to take the second heat in 12.430. Anna faced
Victoria Pendleton in the final.
second semi-final was a clash between the world champion Pendleton and the
New Zealander Williams. In the first heat Williams lead out Pendleton,
approaching the bell Williams could not match the speed of Pendleton
second heat saw Pendleton looking very comfortable took the second sprint in
a time of 12.031 seconds to take her into the Gold/Silver ride off. Williams
will ride off for Bronze against Kerrie Meares in her debut appearance at
the Games. The 24 year-old, who finished last in the Women’s 500m Time
Trail, has another chance to battle for the bronze medal.
Victoria Pendleton qualified for hte semi finals with a relatively easy win over Kate Cullen. Anna Meares beat Fiona Carswell and Kerrie Meares beat Liz Williams.
Williams won the repecharge to gain the fourth spot in the semi finals this evening.
Fiona Carswell took 5th place in the ride-off from Kate Cullen
Final 5-6 Place
5 Fiona Carswell NZL 12.772
6 Kate Cullen SCO
Victoria Pendleton (ENG) has sent a message to the Meares sisters (AUS) by qualifying fastest for the sprint matches later this morning. Pendleton 'suffered' at the hands of the Meares in Manchester in 2002, but she has come to Melbourne a much more experienced rider.
The 200m qualifying time posted by Pendleton beat the old Games record by .0177 of a second. The record was set by Lori-Ann Meunzer (CAN) in Manchester.
1 Pendleton (ENG) 11.275
2 Meares A (AUS) 11.700
3 Meares K (AUS) 11.725
4 Williams E (NZL) 11.781
5 Carswell F (NZL) 11.824
6 Cullen K (SCO) 11.925
Photos Click on any image to enlarge >>
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