New Zealand’s team pursuiters will both ride for medals later this morning (NZT) on the second day of the UCI Track World Championships in Paris.
The men will chase the gold medal when they take on Great Britain after winning their first round clash this morning. The quartet of Dylan Kennett, Pieter Bulling, Alex Frame and Marc Ryan clocked a superb 3:56.198 to beat off the challenge from Switzerland and qualify for the final.
Meanwhile Great Britain accounted for Canada, going 3:55.207 to set up a fight for gold against the Kiwis.
Australia, with a much improved effort of 3:55.314, will take on Germany for the bronze.
In the women, the New Zealand team of Rushlee Buchanan, Lauren Ellis, Jaime Nielsen and Georgia Williams have earned a rid-off for the bronze medal against Canada.
They clocked another best time of 4:22.954 in losing their first round match up against top ranked Australia (4:17.410). They will meet Great Britain (4:16.979) in the gold medal ride after they accounted for Canada (4:17.799).
However the times of Canada and New Zealand were faster than the other four teams to earn a match up for the bronze medal today.
Meanwhile, New Zealand sprinters Sam Webster and Eddie Dawkins, relegated from the team sprint gold medal yesterday, both qualified in the keirin competition this morning (NZT) on the second day of the UCI Track World Championships in Paris.
Dawkins was second behind Germany’s Maximilian Levy in the first heat, with two riders to progress to the second round.
Webster won his first round race to progress with Frenchman Francois Pervis in the fourth heat.
The cut-throat competition has already taken its toll with Great Britain’s Olympic star Jason Kenny, Australians Jacob Schmid and former world champion Shane Perkins, German star Joachim Eilers, USA champion Matthew Baranoski and Canada’s best Hugo Barrette all elimination in the first round repechage.
The second round and finals are on the evening programme starting shortly (NZ time)
CAPTION: The New Zealand men’s team pursuit (from right) Dylan Kennett, Pieter bulling, Marc Ryan, Alex Frame, on the start line in Paris. The image is free for editorial use only.
Photo courtesy Guy Swarbrick/Cycling New Zealand