New Zealand men’s team sprint broke the national record to top qualifiers on the first session of the UCI Oceania Track Cycling Championships in Invercargill.
The combination of Matt Archibald, Sam Webster and Eddie Dawkins clocked 43.765 to become the first New Zealand team to go under the 44 second barrier at home, although they went 0.2 secs faster at the world championships earlier this year.
They took 0.3s off the previous record set at the Oceania Championships in the SIT Zero Fees Velodrome two years ago.
The Australian crack combination of Dan Ellis, Shane Perkins and Matthew Glaetzer were second fastest in 43.967, while Australia B and New Zealand B will fight it out for the bronze medal tonight.
It was all new for the women’s team pursuit with a new combination of Olympians Jaime Nielsen, Lauren Ellis and Rushlee Buchannan joined by 20-year-old Aucklander Georgia Williams to clock the fastest time in their heat.
They clocked 4:36.260 in their first competition since the women’s team pursuit increased to four riders over 4000m to match the men. They ride for the title tonight against Australia, led by Olympic omnium medallist Annette Edmondson, who clocked 4:37.483.
The men’s team pursuit will ride in a straight final against Australia tonight with the other highlights including the men’s 1000m time trial and the women’s 500m time trial featuring 10 time world champion Anna Meares and the return from surgery of Alison Shanks.