2011 UCI Track World Championships
Day 1 Finals
Wednesday 23rd March
500m TT - Olga Panarina wins first gold medal in 2011
In the opening event at Apeldoorn, Netherlands, Belarusian Olga Panarina had to wait until last to ride and delivered the best time ahead of Sandie Clair (France) and Miriam Welte (Germany). Home favourite Willy Kanis (Netherlands) could only manage 4th. 2010 World Champion Anna Meares (Australia) decided to miss the 500m TT in order to give her the best chance in the Team Sprint, Sprint and Keirin competitions.
Olga Panarina (BLR) was thrilled to have finally won the gold medal. "I have been getting faster each year so this year it is good to win. I know that Anna [Meares] did not race and she is fast but I still believed I could win," said Panarina.
Sandie Clair (FRA) was a little disappointed with Silver after holding first place for a while. "My 500m is not the best, so to get a silver medal is good. I tried my best and I have a silver. I still have a lot of racing to go. I am competing in all of the sprint events so I still have a chance for gold," said Clair.
Miriam Welte (GER) was overjoyed to have won a bronze medal in the 500m TT, "It is my first medal in this event and I am very happy, " she said after. "I don't think the track is that fast, I was much quicker in Berlin during training over the last few weeks. The atmosphere was great here, I can't wait until it is full," added Welte.
Points Race - Tatsiana Sharakova wins Gold
Tatsiana Sharakova (BLR) lapped the field to secure her first world championship jersey. Jarmila Machacova (CZE) despite winning 4 sprints had to settle for silver ahead of Giorgia Bronzini (ITA).
The pace of the race was surprisingly slow compared to previous years. Atl 20 of the 100 laps completed, a decisive attack formed. Jarmila Machacova (CZE), Minami Uwano (JPN) and Leire Olaberria Dorronsoro (ESP) managed to break away from the bunch and held them at half a lap for most of the race. Despite a number of attempts from home favourite Marianne Vos (NED), Australian Sarah Kent, Madeleine Sandig (GER) and Giorgia Bronzini (ITA) no one seemed to have the legs to close the gap.
Finally with 35 laps to go the peloton was all together. Immediately, the Belarusian Tatsiana Sharakova attacked. It took her 9 laps to finally take the lap and secure her place firmly in the lead, having secure two sprints.
In the chase for additional points, Bronzini managed to win a sprint and secure third place in the final sprint to secure bronze. Vos just could not manage to get herself in the right position, finishing sixth over all. A disappointing result for the former world and reigning Olympic champion in front of her home crowd.
Tatsiana Sharakova (BLR) was overjoyed with her win. "It isnot the fist time I have tried for this medal. I have tried matimes to attack and win this race. This year it paid off and I won. I am so happy," said Sharakova.
Giorgia Bronzini (ITA) had an incredible year in 2010 becoming World Road champion, the track is however where she has had the most success in her career and winning bronze in 2011 is a great start. "I came here in the best form and hoped for a medal," said Bronzini. "After my gold in Melbourne, I prepared quickly for the track and want to keep my form up for this year," she added.
Bronzini is disappointed that the track clashes with the only World Cup on the road in Italy. She would have loved to race in the rainbow jersey in Italy. "It isn't possible for me to honour the jersey after this event. I want to give the track everything and would be too tired to race in Italy on Sunday. I feel sorry for the organisation as may riders would love to race both events," reflected Bronzini.
Marainne Vos (NED) was racing on home ground at as the reigning Olympic champion for the first time at world level. "It is awesome to be in front of your home crowd. I hoped for a better result and a medal but I blew up in the first half. I did not have the power to make a gap of cover the break. I am disappointed not to medal. I have another chance in the Scratch race on Sunday so we will see," said Vos.
Photos Click on any image to enlarge >>[2011_ChangedCopy/Gallery2011/WorldTrack/01_Day1_Final/PhotoIndex.html]
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