Australia dominated the junior world track championships in Mexico which concluded on Tuesday night, taking seven gold, three silver and two bronze medals. The much smaller British team nevertheless gave a good account of itself, winning the team sprint and the keirin.
As usual, Australia sent a large squad; junior development is an important part of the country's successful track program. The investment was rewarded with victories in the men's omnium, men's 1000m time trial, men's scratch race, men's individual pursuit, men's team pursuit, women's points race and women's individual pursuit.
Great Britain sent just four sprinters to the championships, but they nevertheless took home two gold medals, in the team sprint and keirin.
Australian national junior performance director, Gary Sutton, said the riders' performances have been some of the best he has ever witnessed.
"It's been an unbelievable journey from when we started with them after the Nationals in February, through three training camps to here," said Sutton. "I thought last year was the best ever as far as team spirit but this team is as good and I have nothing but praise for the results, planning and commitment achieved by both the athletes and staff.
"I'm also amazed at the attention we've received as a team from the Mexican fans," said Sutton. "We had to get the security guards to help us get out of the track tonight because of the hundreds of kids and adults wanting autographs and photos with the riders."
You'd think Sutton would be content, but he believes there is still room for improvement.
"I just did our final team talk and be honest have taken two pages of notes on how we can raise the bar for next year," he said. "There'll be no sitting back and resting on our laurels and there are things we can do both on and off the bike to fine tune even more.
"I also spoke to the second year juniors about managing their expectations as they make the very big step into senior competition next year," said Sutton. "We need to nurse them along and make sure we don't lose anyone during the progression from junior to elite ranks."
Fast Brits perform
The British squad was similarly happy with its collection of gold and silver medals. No endurance riders were sent to the world's because, according to British Cycling, they have ample chances to compete at this level on road and track. But for the specialist sprinters there are fewer opportunities, and they rose to this one.
As well as the golds, the UK team also took silver in the men's keirin, men's sprint and women's sprint, plus a bronze in the men's sprint.
|1 Glenn O'Shea (Australia)||15|
|2 Myron Simpson (New Zealand)||22|
|3 Maurice Calles (Germany)||24|
|Men 1000m time trial|
|1 Thomas Palmer (Australia)||01:02.4|
|2 Edward Dawkins (New Zealand)||01:02.5|
|3 Daniel Rackwitz (Germany)||01:03.3|
|Men scratch race|
|1 Travis Meyer (Australia)|
|2 Piotr Kasperkiewicz (Poland)|
|3 Angel Pulgar (Venezuela)|
|Men 3000m individual pursuit|
|1 Travis Meyer (Australia)||03:23.8|
|2 Evgeny Kovalev (Russian Federation)||03:29.9|
|3 Leigh Howard (Australia)||03:23.4|
|4 Jerome Cousin (France)||03:24.2|
|1 Christian Lyte (Great Britain)|
|2 David Daniell (Great Britain)|
|3 Matteo Pelucchi (Italy)|
|4 Charlie Conord (France)|
|5 Takashi Sakamoto (Japan)|
|6 Byron Davis (Australia)|
|Men points race|
|1 Nikita Novikov (Russian Federation)|
|2 Bouke Kuiper (Netherlands)|
|3 Jason Christie (New Zealand)|
|1 Thierry Jollet (France)|
|2 Christian Lyte (Great Britain)|
|3 Peter Mitchell (Great Britain)|
|Men team sprint|
|1 Great Britain|
|1 Russian Federation|
|Avila Vanegas Edwin Alcibiades|
|Ramirez Bernal Jaime|
|Men team pursuit|
|2 Russian Federation|
|Women scratch race|
|1 Iraida Garcia (Cuba)|
|2 Barbara Guarischi (Italy)|
|3 Anna Mosbach (Germany)|
|Women points race|
|1 Josephine Tomic (Australia)|
|2 Jenny Rios (Mexico)|
|3 Iraida Garcia (Cuba)|
|Women 2000m individual pursuit|
|1 Josephine Tomic (Australia)||02:23.2|
|2 Sarah Kent (Australia)||02:30.1|
|3 Lauren Ellis (New Zealand)||02:28.8|
|4 Chantal Blaak (Netherlands)||02:30.7|
|Women 500m time trial|
|1 Kristina Vogel (Germany)||00:35.187|
|2 Huang Ting Ying (Chinese Taipei)||00:35.256|
|3 Sabine Bretschneider (Germany)||00:35.711|
|1 Victoria Baranova (Russian Federation)|
|2 Josephine Butler (Australia)|
|3 Monique Sullivan (Canada)|
|1 Kristina Vogel (Germany)|
|2 Jess Varnish (Great Britain)|
|3 Charlene Delev (Germany)|
|Women team sprint|
|2 Chinese Taipei|
|Szu Ping Lin|
|Huang Ting Ying|
|3 Russian Federation|