Thursday, February 21, 2013

Track Worlds Day 1: Spain goes 4th in Team Pursuit Finals

The Spanish Team Pursuit squad, which includes Basque riders Unai Elorriaga and Asier Maeztu, rode to a surprising fourth place at the UCI World Track Cycling Championships in Minsk, Belarus. The team itself did not include some of the bigger Spanish pursuiting names like David Muntaner so while expectations for the squad were high, they were not expecting any miracles.

Yet a miracle came for the Spanish squad during qualifying. The powerful Russian team, which had brought their A team from the Olympics, suffered a catastrophe as Artur Ershov crashed within the first kilometer and left them with only three men for the final 3 kilometers. The Spanish, thanks to a very quick final kilometer, snuck into 4th place and qualified for the bronze final.

While Spain ran into the strong Danish squad in the bronze final, 4th place is a commendable feat for a team that was not supposed to be challenging for a medal.

Coverage of the World Track Championships will continue all week long. Unai Elorriaga should be lining up for the men's omnium, which is where he got himself a bronze medal in the Glasgow World Cup this season.

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