The New Zealand pair of Olivia Podmore and Emma Cumming have won a silver medal on the opening day of the UCI Juniors Track Cycling World Championships in Astana, Kazakhstan over night.
The New Zealand women’s team pursuit combination were top qualifiers in the team pursuit, breaking the world record in the process to complete an outstanding day for the small Kiwi team at Astana.
Podmore (Canterbury) and Cumming (Southland) were the second fastest in qualifying in the women’s team sprint in 34.406s, beaten by European champions Germany who set a new world record of 33.992. This broke the previous record set by Russia at the world championships in Invercargill in 2012.
While the New Zealand combination were able to lower the personal best again to 34.219in the final, they could not quite match the Germans who broke their own world record again, winning in 33.899.
“They have trained well throughout the entire camp so their outstanding performance was not a surprise,” said coach Ross Machejefski. “We knew the girls were producing times close to what the Germans did at the European championships.
“We focussed on them being relaxed but hungry at the same time and processed focussed.”
Podmore was thrilled with the result.
“It is so exciting and such an honour to be up on that World Championship podium representing New Zealand,”
“It was great team work, great process focus and we went out there and just going out and smashing it,” said Cumming.
There was further cause for celebration when the women’s team pursuit quartet of Bryony Botha, Michaela Drummond, Madeleine Park, Holly White not only qualified at the top of the leaderboard, but broke the world record in the process.
They clocked 4:35.155 to be the only team under the 4:36 barrier and beat the previous world record set by Great Britain at the last world championships in Glasgow.
They were second fastest through the first kilometre and then reeled off three consistent kilos in 1:06 and two of 1:07 to be nearly one second faster than Russia and Australia.
“The women’s endurance team did well. To be the top qualifiers by so much is pretty cool,” Machejefski said. “The job is not over and they are looking forward to another good ride tomorrow. It’s good to start the first day with confidence.”
The New Zealander’s take on Japan in the semifinal tomorrow.
Women Team Sprint qualifying: Germany 33.962, 1 (world record); New Zealand (Emma Cumming, Olivia Podmore) 34.406, 2; Australia 3, Italy 4.
Gold medal ride: Germany 33.899, 1 (world record); New Zealand 34.219, 2.
Bronze: Italy 3, Australia 4.
Women’s 4000m team pursuit qualifying: New Zealand (Bryony Botha, Michaela Drummond, Madeleine Park, Holly White) 4:35.155, 1 (World Record); Russia 4:46.046, 2; Australia 4:46.347, 3; Japan 4:47.812, 4.
CAPTION: Olivia Podmore and Emma Cumming (left) on the podium at the UCI Juniors Track Cycling World Championships in Astana today.