Aussie Meares Makes Track History As French Raise Roof

Bauge_Track_Champs_2015

By Barnaby CHESTERMAN

Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, France, Feb 22, 2015 (AFP) – Australian Anna
Meares won a historic 11th women’s world title as France ended the World Track
Cycling Championships in Paris in celebratory style.

Meares won the women’s keirin to eclipse the record gold medal mark of 10
she previously shared with Frenchwoman Felicia Ballanger.

But there was plenty to cheer for the home fans as Gregory Bauge won his
fourth men’s sprint title and ninth world crown in total while Bryan Coquard
and Morgan Kneisky claimed gold in the madison.

Australia shared the limelight as Annette Edmondson won the women’s omnium
but the hosts topped the medals table with five golds ahead of the Aussies
(four) and Germany (three).

Britain, after their Olympic dominance two-and-a-half years ago, failed to
win a single gold and finished down in 10th — their worst record since 2001.

Still the star of the day — in all but French eyes — was Meares, who
claimed a 25th world championship medal.

“I had a dream before the Paris worlds were announced that the world titles
were in France, that I got to win my 11th world title, and that I got to meet
Felicia Ballanger,” said Meares.

“Two of those have happened — I still haven’t met the great woman but
there’s still time.”

Meares was in complete control of the keirin final, helped perhaps by
teammate Stephanie Morton being disqualified from competing after suffering a
mechanical problem on the opening lap.

The two were separated by just one thousandths of a second in their
semi-final — although Meares did win it.

Shanne Braspennincx of the Netherlands took the silver ahead of Cuba’s
Lisandra Guerra in third.

Australia’s women finished with four gold medals from a possible nine as
Edmondson beat Olympic champion Laura Trott of Britain to the omnium title.

It was the 23-year-old’s second gold medal of the championships having been
part of the Australian world record-breaking team pursuit squad on Thursday.

Edmondson had never before beaten Trott at a world championship or
Olympics, four times taking a minor medal behind the Brit, who was also world
champion in 2012.

Kirsten Wild of the Netherlands, who won the scratch race world title on
Saturday, took bronze.

– Bauge thrills –

Bauge was a hugely popular winner of the men’s sprint in an ecstatic finish
to the five-day competition for the home fans.

Frenchmen won the final two disciplines as Bauge thrilled with his powerful
sprinting.

And he raised his hand up to the sky showing all five fingers, in reference
to the 2011 world title he was stripped of for missing three doping tests.

Bauge won four sprint titles in a row from 2009 to 2012 but lost the 2011
one — as well as France’s team sprint title that same year — on a back-dated
ban.
He was too strong for Russia’s Denis Dmitriev in the final and succeeded
compatriot Francois Pervis as sprint champion, also winning his second gold of
the championships to add to the team sprint snared Wednesday after New Zealand
were demoted for an early changeover.

France ensured they would finish top of the medals table, despite winning
just seven compared to Australia’s 11, as their madison pair won a bewildering
if exciting race.

Coquard and Kniesky beat Italian pair Liam Bertazzo and Elia Viviani by one
point while Belgian duo Jasper de Buyst and Otto Vergaerde pipped the reigning
champions David Muntaner and Albert Torres of Spain to bronze on finishing
position.

Final medals table
at the World Track Cycling Championships on Sunday (gols, silver, bronze,
total):

1. France 5 0 2 7
2. Australia 4 4 3 11
3. Germany 3 1 3 7
4. Russia 2 2 0 4
5. Netherlands 1 2 1 4
5. New Zealand 1 2 1 4
7. China 1 0 1 2
8. Colombia 1 0 0 1
8. Switzerland 1 0 0 1
10. Britain 0 3 0 3
11. Spain 0 2 0 2
12. United States 0 1 2 3
13. Italy 0 1 1 2
14. Japan 0 1 0 1
15. Canada 0 0 2 2
16. Belgium 0 0 1 1
16. Cuba 0 0 1 1
16. Malaysia 0 0 1 1

A list of the 19
champions from the 2015 World Track Cycling Championships:

Men
Individual Sprint: Gregory Bauge (FRA)
Team Sprint: France (Gregory Bauge, Kevin Sireau, Michael d’Almeida)
Keirin: Francois Pervis (FRA)
1km Timetrial: Francois Pervis (FRA)
Individual Pursuit: Stefan Kueng (SUI)
Team Pursuit: New Zealand (Pieter Bulling, Dylan Kennett, Alex Frame, Marc
Ryan)
Madison: France (Bryan Coquard, Morgan Kneisky)
Points Race: Artur Ershov (RUS)
Scratch: Lucas Liss (GER)
Omnium: Fernando Gaviria (COL)

Women:
Individual Sprint: Kristina Vogel (GER)
Team Sprint: Chine (Gong Jinjie, Zhong Tianshi)
500m Timetrial: Anastasia Voynova (RUS)
Keirin: Anna Meares (AUS)
Individual Pursuit: Rebecca Wiasak (AUS)
Team Pursuit: Australia (Melissa Hoskins, Ashlee Ankudinoff, Amy Cure,
Annette Edmondson)
Points Race: Stephanie Pohl (GER)
Scratch: Kirsten Wild (NED)
Omnium: Annette Edmondson (AUS)

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