Sir Chris Hoy seals gold double as rising star Laura Trott also shines
Sir Chris Hoy ends the UCI World Cup with two golds and one bronze - proving the 35-year-old isn't slowing down
Sir Chris Hoy stormed to double gold at the UCI World Cup in London – and then admitted he can’t wait to get back for the Olympics.
Hoy and British team-mate and world champion Jason Kenny are locked in close battle for the one available men’s sprint selection at London 2012.
But the veteran 35-year-old struck a major blow in a weekend that has seen him repel all-comers in a velodrome he helped design.
First he scorched to victory in the men’s keirin, then he backed it up with a win in the sprint – beating disgraced world champion Gregory Bauge in the semi-finals, Germany’s Maximillan Levy in the final and laying down a timely marker to Kenny, who failed to reach the last four.
“There’s still a long way to go and Jason is not far away,” said Hoy, who also won team sprint bronze.
“He’s a formidable opponent and he won’t lie down. He’s almost there and he’s a crafty rider so if he gets a little more speed before the Worlds in Melbourne he’ll be right up there.
“I didn’t expect to get two golds and a bronze here. I was just looking for good performances.
“This is the best I’ve been since Beijing, no question.
“I have gained a lot of confidence and I’ve really enjoyed it and that is the main thing.
“Nobody was missing from this event – all the top guys we here. This was the World Cup event to win.”
Kenny also insisted nothing is decided yet, a sentiment endorsed by British Cycling’s Dave Brailsford, who will know, because of his legendary attention to detail, that there are exactly 163 days until the Olympic track programme starts and much can change in that time.
“I don’t know about handing Chris the initiative, we have other races going on in the background,” he said.
“We’re just concentrating on getting faster for both the Worlds and the Olympics.
“I’ve been chasing times all year and that’s the fastest 200m I’ve done this year by quite a margin so I’m pleased with that.”
Great Britain’s team pursuit squad settled for second – as widely predicted – as the world champion Australians proved just too strong for Ed Clancy, Geraint Thomas, Pete Kennaugh and Steve Burke.
But the Olympic champions new-look quartet are improving and the margin of victory was not as dominant as some were claiming before this weekend.
“We were a tiny bit off but not too much,” said Clancy.
“The Aussies are only a threat if we perceive it as that, but I wouldn’t look into the psychology of it.
“It’s a test event – there are six months to go and nobody will remember the test event at the end of the day.
“I’m pretty confident we’ve got more to come, not that the Aussies haven’t.
“We’d like to win the Worlds but we want to win the Olympics a lot more. The big day will be the end of the war – this was just a little battle.”
Elsewhere, Victoria Pendleton failed to medal in the women’s keirin final although rising star Laura Trott underlined her all-around skills with a bronze medal in the six-event omnium.
“I was pretty spent after the first day and it’s just been a good weekend’s training for me really,” said Pendleton, who also finished fourth in the sprint.
“The Olympic schedule is longer so there is time to recover. I’m still pretty deep in heavy training but I’m ahead of where I need to be and thought I would be.”