HUDDERSFIELD’S Ed Clancy missed gold last night.
Already an Olympic champion, he led Great Britain’s team pursuit men against Australia at the Track Cycling World Championships in Copenhagen but came up narrowly short in the final.
Australia claimed gold by just 0.152 seconds over Britain.
Jason Queally watched on from the British team pit as Clancy, Steven Burke, Andy Tennant and Ben Swift clocked 3min 55.806sec in the four kilometres, four-man event.
Britain were trailing throughout but narrowed the gap in the last kilometre, only for Australia’s quartet of Cameron Meyer, Jack Bobridge, Rohan Dennis and Michael Hepburn to win in 3mins 55.654secs as two teams in the same race rode beneath 3-56 for the first time.
Meyer, who won the men’s points race in commanding fashion on day one, was a formidable replacement for Australia in the final and proved the difference.
“They just had the legs on us,” said former Holme Valley Wheeler Clancy. “We only lost by a small margin, which sometimes makes it more of a bitter pill to swallow, but we’ll come back.”
Clancy expects his fellow Olympic gold medal winners Bradley Wiggins and Geraint Thomas – absent this week concentrating on their road careers with Team Sky – to return for the London Games in 2012.
But he was proud of the squad, particularly after the fastest ever qualification ride of 3-56.869.
“As a team we’re used to winning,” said Clancy. “We’re GB and people expect us to win.
“Anything other than a win always seems a bit of a disappointment.
“We thought a (three minutes) 56, 57 would win on this track and normally it would.
“We knew the Aussies are coming strong at the moment. They’ve got a good bunch of young lads and I guess they just did us on the day.
“We can’t be disappointed with our ride.”
Meanwhile, having safely secured his 10th World Championships title, Sir Chris Hoy will take a well-earned rest before focusing on going for No11.
The 34-year-old four-time Olympic champion won the men’s keirin on the second day, recovering from the indignity of being dumped on his backside as his heat began following an opponent’s illegal move.
But, after securing a third world keirin title in four years – the only honour missing because he was absent 12 months ago with a hip problem – Hoy will rest up ready for today’s men’s sprint.
The Scot expects a battle to reclaim the sprint title from Gregory Bauge of France.