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Archibald dominates, Lavreysen retains in round two of track champions league

Panevėžys velodrome, Lithuania, plays host to second round of new-format series: 'This event is very important for track cycling.'

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Katie Archibald (Great Britain), Harrie Lavreysen (Netherlands), and Emma Hinze (Germany) picked up where they left off at the UCI Track Champions League on Saturday night.

The three continue to top their categories after the second round of racing in the inaugural champions league series, which moved to the Panevėžys velodrome, Lithuania, this weekend.

Sebastián Mora (Spain) took a slim lead over round one-leader Corbin Strong (New Zealand) in the men’s endurance league. Mora won both the men’s races, capitalizing on his kiwi rival’s disappointing scratch race and shock early exit from the elimination.

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“It feels very good to race in this event. It feels very different. I like the race, I like the UCI track champions league, and I think it’s very important for track cycling,” Mora said Saturday.

“The people of Lithuania are fantastic. It feels great to win two out of two. It’s very difficult to win two races in one day.”

Gavin Hoover (USA) now sits third in the league, six points back on Mora.

Archibald carried her winning momentum from the opening round in Mallorca to win both the elimination and scratch races and take a dominant 13-point lead in the endurance series into round three.

Archibald carries a strong lead in the women’s elimination series into round three in London next weekend. (Photo: Alex Whitehead/SWpix)

After already winning the Olympic madison and claiming the European and world omnium titles this season, Archibald outsprinted rival Maggie Coles-Lyster (Canada) in a tense battle in the elimination race before beating Yvonne Stenberg (Norway) in the finale.

“I went in solely looking for Maggie [Coles-Lyster] who’s the other contender for the main overall right now. She’s been very, very strong so far,” Archibald said.

Like Archibald, Hinze sits atop a huge 18-point lead in her sprint league after round two of the five-race series. Hinze extended her advantage from the Mallorca event after placing second to countrywoman Lea Friedrich in the keirin and taking top honors in the sprint race Saturday night.

“It was hard racing tonight, the same as in Mallorca. I’m exhausted,” Hinze said afterward. “The crowd is great – it’s a great place to ride. It feels good to extend my lead in the category and I’m proud to win this one again.”

Lavreysen (in blue) edged victory in both the sprint and keirin to retain his series lead. (Photo: Will Palmer/SWpix)

The men’s sprint standings sit tightly-coiled heading into round three in London.

Lavreysen leads Stefan Bötticher (Germany) by just four points, with Lavreysen’s countryman Jeffrey Hoogland a further three points back. Olympic sprint champ Lavreysen snatched victory in both his races to retain the blue leader’s jersey.

Racing resumes at the Lea Valley VeloPark in London for back-to-back rounds on December 3 and 4. The series closes at the Sylvan Adams National Velodrome in Tel Aviv on December 11.

Standings after round 2:

Women’s sprint:

  1. Emma Hinze (Germany): 74
  2. Lea Friedrich (Germany): 56
  3. Kelsey Mitchell (Canada): 50

Men’s sprint:

  1. Harrie Lavreysen (Netherlands): 37
  2. Stefan Bötticher (Germany): 33
  3. Jeffrey Hoogland (Netherlands): 30

Women’s endurance:

  1. Katie Archibald (Great Britain): 73
  2. Maggie Coles-Lyster (Canada): 60
  3. Anita Yvonne Stenberg (Norway): 47

Men’s endurance:

  1. Sebastián Mora (Spain): 59
  2. Corbin Strong (New Zealand): 57
  3. Gavin Hoover (USA): 53