Laura Trott added a another silver to GB’s collection on the final day of the World Champ held just outside Paris. Trott performed a minor miracle in coming back from her poo start in the elimination race, though a 35.8 in the 500 TT was a little below pa and cost her a few valuable places.
there was little else to cheer for the Brits, Jess Varnish departing the kierin at the first hurdle and the men’s madison team of Owain Doull an Mark Christian losing a lap an finishing 11th.
Overall, it’s hard not to describe these championships as a minor disaster, though head coach Sutton and many of the riders have been making all the right noises about peaking in Rio. Let’s hope so.
Either way, it wasn’t all doom and gloom and there were some good times posted helped by what might be the fastest sea-level, regular sized track in the world right now.
Here’s a summary of where Brits impacted the All-Time British Rankings.
Flying 200m: Jason Kenny clocked the fifth fastest ever ride by a Brit and the second fastest ever at sea-level with a 9.804. Only he himself has been faster without altitude assistance – his London 2012 time of 9.713.
Callum Skinner also went sub-10, with the 21st fastest British clocking ever, making him only the third Brit after Hoy and Kenny to break the magical barrier at sea-level and on a 250m track.
Kilo: Skinner set a big sea-level pb with his 61.071, the 5th fastest British ride ever. Only Hoy has been faster at sea-level.
Pursuit: Andy Tennant took advantage of the conditions to knock 0.7 off his best with a 4:20.733. That’s enough to vault him up from 9th to 6th on the all-time list, though such has been the consistent excellence of Brad Wiggins, that it takes a 4:!8 to crack the top 20 rides ever. Only Boardman’s superman aided rides and a couple by Gerraint Thomas break the Wiggo hegemony.
Flying 200m: Even allowing for the swift Siberian pine track, Jess Varnish’s 10.804 was a significant ride – the fourth fastest ever by a Brit with only Vicky Pendleton having gone faster at sea-level. Varnish now have four of the top 20 rides of all-time, with Pendleton on 10, British record holder Becky James on three and Vicky Williamson with four. Williamson added the fourth in Paris with a big sea-level pb of 10.935. Only Pendleton and Varnish have been quicker at sea-level.
500m TT: Katy Marchant moved to 5th on the all-time list with her 34.633. Only Pendleton and Varnish have been quicker at sea-level, though James’s 34.021 in Cali might be a superior performance given that the Colombian track offers many handicaps to go along with the altitude boost.
Pursuit: Katie Archibald missed out on a medal ride to teammate Joanna Rowsell, but the Scot was the only one to set a pb. Her 3:31.276 sees her leapfrog Sarah Storey for sixth fastest ever. Just a word of respect here for Wendy Houvenagel who posted quicker than either Rowsell or Archibald did in Paris on at least 10 occasions, and all without altitude assistance.
So statistically, a good long weekend’s work for GB. Juxtaposed against the modest medal haul and event placings, this is a good demonstration of just how far the rest of the world has progressed.Time yet though for a British response in Rio.