Team pursuit is arguably the most skilled discipline in track racing as riders follow each other centimetres apart at 60km/h, swapping turns on the front with miltary precision and balletic grace.
Today in Manchester, Denmark surprised everyone and qualified fastest, breaking the four minute barrier with a time of 3:57.73 to push hosts Great Britain into second place with 3:58.98.
But in the final, it was a totally different story. Britain's quartet of Ed Clancy, Bradley Wiggins, Paul Manning and Geraint Thomas delivered a stunning performance to win the gold in a time of 3:56.32, setting a new world record in the process. The Brits shaved 0.3 seconds off the previous record, set by Australia at the Athens Olympics nearly four years ago.
Denmark had to be content with silver, although they did go under four minutes in the final. The bronze went to Australia, who defeated New Zealand by nearly two seconds.
Stephen McMahon was in Manchester to capture all the action.
|The Korean team started the qualifying rounds of the men's team pursuit and expectations were high. |
|Colombia was next up, finishing in a time of 4|
|Focusing before the off - the French team wait for the start of their qualification run.|
|The French team in action... |
|...and getting the split time information. |
|Spain finished seventh, just over half a second slower than the French squad. |
|The Russian squad clinched fifth spot by a quarter of a second from France. |
|The Netherlands had to settle for eighth place|
|Bradley McGee leads the Australian squad to fourth place in the men's team pursuit. |
|The German team on their way to ninth position. |
|New Zealand took third place in qualifying, beating Australia by just over a tenth of a second. |
|The Danish team took the start looking determined before a convincing victory in qualifying. |
|The Ukrainian team had to complete the final kilometre of their qualifying session with three riders|
|A tightly knit quartet. Defending champions Great Britain qualified second to make the final|
|The British men's team pursuit team were ecstatic at winning & setting a new world record|
For more reports, results & photos from the track world championships, see Cyclingnews.com.