Women's team pursuit earns silver at Track World Championships


The women’s team pursuit squad of Sarah Hammer (Temecula, Calif./OUCH), Jennie Reed (Seattle, Wash./OUCH) and Dotsie Bausch (Irvine, Calif./OUCH) brought home the first medal of the 2011 UCI Track World Championships for the United States. After turning out the second best time in the morning’s qualifier, the trio was defeated by Great Britain in the evening’s gold-medal match-up. The silver is the first-ever medal for the U.S. in the event. Giddeon Massie (Cypress, Calif./Bike Religion) just missed qualifying for the men’s sprint tournament, finishing 27th out of 50 in the flying 200 meter.
The ladies displayed the strength of America's emerging track cycling program with the silver.
The ladies displayed the strength of America's emerging track cycling program with the silver.
Women’s Team Pursuit

After Bausch, Hammer and Lauren Tamayo (Asheville, N.C./OUCH) finished just out of the medals in fourth place last year, the American women team pursuiters were determined to bring home the hardware in 2011. The British squad was also hungry after settling for silver in 2010 and seemed bound for gold, posting a 3:23.419 to best American trio by nearly two seconds in the final.     
“I think sometimes it’s a little difficult to keep it in perspective after you lose, but we’re second best in the world and we made it into the gold medal final and that’s a huge accomplishment in itself,” shared Hammer, a four-time individual pursuit world title holder, following the final. “We moved up from fourth last year, but it’s also leaps and bounds above what fourth equaled last year. It’s a great start to the week for me.”
New Zealand secured the bronze with a victory over Australia in the bronze medal bout.
“It’s tough to lose even though you get that silver medal, but we were certainly happy to be in the gold medal ride,” said Benjamin Sharp, USA Cycling High Performance Endurance Director. “These ladies are representatives of the strength of the entire program. Having five-to-seven women to choose from is a huge step for American track racing. We are working to build a program and this shows we’re headed in the right direction.”
For four-time world championship medalist and Olympian Reed, the medal solidified her comeback to cycling and transition over to more endurance events.
“I think it was unexpected to come so soon,” said Reed. “We didn’t really have it for the final, but we were happy to get silver. We’ve come a long way. We have a really good program going with a bunch of motivated girls and it has pushed us to another level. The silver really shows how much work we’ve put in. Still a bit of work to do, but I’ll take a silver medal — this year.”  
In qualifying, the ladies executed just as planned, building strength as they rode and recording a 3:23.965 to take the best time with three teams left to ride. Next up, New Zealand just missed the U.S. mark with a 3:24.701, but the British snipped the Americans by around 3/10ths of a second with a 3:23.642. The defending world champions, the Australians, were yet to come. The Aussies were only able to post a 3:25.253 however, landing the Americans in the women’s team pursuit gold medal match for the first-ever time.
“Exactly what we wanted to do, to the tenth,” explained USA Cycling track coach for these world championships Neal Henderson. “You plan and they executed — excellent. They paced well. It’s now how you start but how you finish.”    
Hammer will go on to contest the individual pursuit and the omnium events later this week.
Men’s Sprint
Massie rode his best time of the season in men’s sprint qualifying, but it wasn’t quite enough to get him into the tournament. A total of 50 of the world’s top sprinters contested this morning’s qualifying round and Massie posted a 10.576 over the 200-meter distance to place 27th, just three spots away from qualifying.
“For me it went well. Not quite what I wanted, but at this stage it’s just one more check mark off the list in making progress,” said Massie. “I’m not satisfied, but I think it’s something I can take with me to improve. I’m just trying to make those little improvements right now and Jamie is a huge, huge asset. It’s great to have him on board to really get the most out of our potential. The important thing now is that we continue to push ourselves and look at things in perspective. I think before you know it we’ll be in position to challenge for those top spots. Right now we move on and work towards making the next step to be competitive on the international level.”
Massie posted a 5.219 over the first 100 meters and a 5.357 over the second half.  
“Giddeon rode quite an even ride, better than what he’s done all season so it’s a good time for him,” stated USA Cycling Sprint Program Director. “He likes the big gears and he is strong, so we chose a 108 inch gear which is quite big, but he held it well.”
Mickael Bourgain of France clocked the fastest qualifying time at 10.043 and will hold the number one seed heading into the sprint tournament. Bourgain’s time was nearly 1/10th of a second faster than reigning Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy (GBR) who rode a 10.111. The tournament continues and the title will be awarded Friday evening.
Coming Up
On Friday Bobby Lea (Mertztown, Pa./The Sports TEAM) will begin his quest for a spot on the omnium podium and Hammer will look to defend her world title in the individual pursuit.
Cycling fans can watch live online at universalsports.com beginning at 1:30 p.m. EST on Friday or see a re-cap of all the action from Apeldoorn during a two-hour show on the Universal Sports television network on Sunday, April 3rd at 7:00 p.m. EST.
Check the link for the full schedule and more information on the UCI Track World Championships. Don’t forget to stay tuned to www.usacycling.org for daily reports, PHOTOS and brief, behind the scenes VIDEOS of all the action.
UCI Track World Championships
March 23-27, 2011
Women’s Team Pursuit
1. Great Britain: Laura Trott, Wendy Houvenaghel, Danielle King  - Qualifying time: 3:23.642
2. USA: Sarah Hammer (Temecula, Calif./OUCH), Jennie Reed (Seattle, Wash./OUCH) and Dotsie Bausch (Irvine, Calif./OUCH) - Qualifying time: 3:23.965
3. New Zealand: Kaytee Boyd, Jaime Nielson, Alyson Shanks - Qualifying time: 3:24.701
Men’s Sprint Qualifying
1. Mickael Bourgain (FRA) 10.043
2. Chris Hoy (GBR) 10.111
3. Jason Kenny (GBR) 10.120
27. Giddeon Massie (Cypress, Calif./Bike Religion) 10.576

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