Scotland’s Katie Archibald win world cycling gold medal

Great Britain's Katie Archibald celebrates after winning the gold medal in the women's omnium at the World Track Cycling championships in Hong Kong. Picture: Kin Cheung/AP

Great Britain's Katie Archibald celebrates after winning the gold medal in the women's omnium at the World Track Cycling championships in Hong Kong. Picture: Kin Cheung/AP

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Scotland’s Katie Archibald claimed Britain’s first gold medal of the Track Cycling World Championships on day three in Hong Kong with victory in the women’s omnium.

The 23-year-old Milngavie rider held off her rivals in the concluding points race to win ahead of Australia’s Amy Cure and Kirsten Wild of Holland.

It was Britain’s third medal of the championships after Elinor Barker’s scratch race silver on day one and Chris Latham’s bronze in the corresponding men’s event on Thursday.

With two-time Olympic omnium champion Laura Kenny absent pregnant, expecting her first child with six-time Olympic gold medallist Jason Kenny, Archibald was given an individual focus here.

The Olympic team pursuit champion, with her shock of pink hair showing under her helmet, justified the call as she succeeded Laura Kenny as world champion.

It was Archibald’s second world title after the 2014 team pursuit success in Cali, Colombia.

She missed last year’s Track World Championships in London after falling off her motorbike, but returned in time to claim Olympic gold in Rio last August.

The omnium has been revised since Laura Kenny’s success in Brazil and now features four bunch disciplines in one day.

Archibald won both the scratch race and the tempo race to take an eight-point lead with two disciplines remaining.

Cure won the elimination race, the penultimate discipline, as Archibald was fifth.

The pair entered the concluding 80-lap (20-kilometres) points race level on 112 points.

The points race featured eight sprints where points were awarded - five points for winning the sprint, while 20 points were available for gaining a lap on the field - and scores were added to the overall total.

Archibald scored two points in the first sprint and five in the second to take a six-point lead over Cure, who then joined two others in a break as she sought to take a lap.

The Scot had a smile on her face as she tried to encourage Cure’s other rivals to chase.

Wild and Sarah Hammer of the United States managed to bridge the gap to the Australian and distance Archibald.

The lap did not materialise and Archibald regained contact.

Further attacks followed, but Archibald’s rivals were recovering ahead of the final two sprints.

Wild beat Cure to the line at the penultimate sprint and Archibald took one point.

Her lead was two points from Cure and five from Wild ahead of the last sprint, where double points were available.

Crucially Archibald scored two points as her rivals missed out and she triumphed.

She celebrated by punching the air, with a broad grin and was then given a Union Flag which she unfurled behind her.

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