Hong Kong (AFP) — USA claimed a second consecutive women’s team pursuit title with a thrilling victory over Australia at the UCI World Track Cycling Championships in Hong Kong on Thursday.
The U.S. team included Kimberly Geist, Kelly Catlin, Chloe Dygert, and Jennifer Valente. The latter three were part of the world championship team from 2016. Amy Cure, Ashlee Ankudinoff, Alexandra Manly, and Rebecca Wiasak rode for the Aussie squad that earned the silver medal.
The defending champions and Olympic silver medalists held off a gritty late effort by the Australians, who trailed from the start but briefly snatched the lead, to win by 0.417 seconds. Former junior world road champion Dygert put in a massive pull at the front of the U.S. team in the final kilometer of the 4km event to lead her team to a rainbow jersey.
“That was a fantastic battle with a very good Australian team,” said Jim Miller, USA Cycling vice president of athletics. “We had a fight to the very end. Hats off to the Aussies, they rode a great race.”
New Zealand won the bronze-medal race against an Italian team which led until the final 500 metres but fell apart to finish nearly five seconds adrift.
1. USA, 4:19.413
2. Australia, 4:19.830
3. New Zealand, 4:21.778
4. Italy, 4:26.562
5. Great Britain