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22 Mar 2018 22:54
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  •   Home > News > Motoring

    Buchanan nails omnium bronze

    Better known for her exploits on the road, Rushlee Buchanan has won bronze in the omnium at the world track cycling championships in the Netherlands.

    Rushlee Buchanan has produced an outstanding performance to grab New Zealand's first medal at the track cycling world championships in the Dutch city of Apeldoorn.

    Buchanan lapped the field twice in the points race, the final discipline in the four-event omnium, to jump from 11th place to third in the overall standings.

    In her first omnium at a world championship, Buchanan, one of New Zealand's most celebrated road riders, showed her skill on the track.

    She was 15th in the scratch race and 13th in the tempo race on the afternoon programme, finishing ninth in an exciting elimination race.

    Buchanan saved her best for last in the points race, a mix of chess on top of both endurance and sprinting ability.

    After lapping the field early, she was in a key three-person break that lapped the field for a second time, to pick up 40 bonus points to go with two sprint wins up for grabs every 10 laps.

    "I started the day pretty slow, but I knew my strengths were in the later events. I just raced to win the points race but with 20 laps to go I realised I was third overall. Then it was game on," said Buchanan.

    "It was always my plan to go long and be aggressive. I can't beat the likes of Kirsten Wild in a match sprint, so I knew I had to play my cards early and take as many opportunities as I could.

    "I knew I had to leave it all out there. I tried to position myself for the last sprint, but ran out of gas - but it ended up in my favour."

    Buchanan said she would like to put her hand up for this spot through to the Tokyo Olympics.

    "I am certainly going to take huge confidence from this through to the Commonwealth Games."

    Eddie Dawkins muscled his way into Sunday's quarter-finals in the men's individual sprint where he takes on Britain's Jack Carlin.

    Teammate Ethan Mitchell, who won a bronze medal last year, headed the Kiwi qualifiers for the sprint, clocking 9.805sec in a blistering qualifying session, to be 11th fastest.

    All three New Zealand sprinters qualified with Dawkins 14th in 9.843 and Sam Webster 23rd in 10.002.

    Dawkins and Mitchell both won their first round match races but Webster was eliminated by Frenchman Melvin Landerneau.

    Dawkins then produced an outstanding ride to oust local star Harrie Lavreysen, although Mitchell was pipped in a closely fought sprint finish by Poland's Mateusz Rudyk in his second-round clash.


    © 2018 NZN, NZCity

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