Commonwealth Games: Scottish cyclists land five medals on dramatic day in velodrome

Scottish riders romped to an all-time high haul of five Commonwealth Games medals on a single dramatic day in the velodrome.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 31: (L - R) Silver Medalist, John Archibald of Team Scotland, Gold Medalist, Corbin Strong of Team New Zealand and William Roberts of Team Wales celebrate on the podium during the Men's Track Cycling 15km Scratch Race medal ceremony on day three of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at Lee Valley Velopark Velodrome on July 31, 2022 on the London, England. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 31: (L - R) Silver Medalist, John Archibald of Team Scotland, Gold Medalist, Corbin Strong of Team New Zealand and William Roberts of Team Wales celebrate on the podium during the Men's Track Cycling 15km Scratch Race medal ceremony on day three of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at Lee Valley Velopark Velodrome on July 31, 2022 on the London, England. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

For most it will go down in history for a horrific incident involving English rider Matt Walls.

Remarkably the Olympic omnium champion suffered ‘no major injuries’ other than stitches in his forehead, scrapes and bruises after being thrown over barriers into the crowd in a scratch race heat

John Archibald was in the same race and a few metres behind Walls when he mounted the top of the track but managed to avoid injury.

Archibald said of the incident: “It was the noise that struck me, a lot of carbon snapping.

“I saw him go up the track but I was fortunate enough that the gap opened up for me, there was no skill involved, I just got lucky and sort of threaded the needle somehow.”

The Edinburgh star went on to win silver in the final, his second Commonwealth medal of that colour having reached the individual pursuit podium at Gold Coast 2018.

He said: “It means a lot. It’s always nicer to look back on and reflect later. Last time I didn’t quite relish it as much as I should have done, but I think I’ll enjoy this one a lot more.”

Jack Carlin won a controversial sprint bronze and then opened up about fierce battles with post-Olympic blues.

Carlin was awarded bronze after Australia’s Australia’s Matt Glaetzer was relegated in the deciding race for making contact with the Olympic silver medalist.

Amid the emotional tumult of the late decision a tearful Carlin told the world of his struggles since making his Olympic debut in Tokyo.

He said: “It’s not been an easy few months for me and I’ve been really struggling with the sport.

“I appreciated it so much before Tokyo but I feel like I fell out of love with the sport and almost became a robot, ticking the box in training.

“I wanted to come here and enjoy the experience because I’ve not been enjoying it recently. I feel like the fire has been reignited and I’m looking forward to the next couple of years.”

Neah Evans set up a shot at a Games hat-trick with silver in the points race.

Having collected bronze in the individual pursuit the Langbank rider picked up 36 points in intermediate sprints to take silver behind dominant Australian Georgia Baker.

She can become the first Scot to win three track cycling medals at a single Games if she reaches the rostrum in the scratch race on the final day of racing.

She said: “With the nature of the race the odds were stacked against me so I’m delighted.”

“I’m going to give everything to get a third. I think there’s going to be a lot of people marking me tomorrow so it’s going to be a big ask. The scratch is just so unpredictable.”

Meanwhile Neil Fachie fell narrowly short of becoming the most successful Scottish athlete in Games history as he settled for tandem sprint silver.

For a few days at least the Aberdeen ace had the chance to leapfrog lawn bowler Alex Marshall atop the Team Scotland gold medal charts but he was onvincingly beaten by Welsh rival James Ball.

Fachie said: “It’s been an amazing few days. I feel a bit rubbish now but that’s fine, we were beaten by the better guys on the day.

In the women’s tandem kilo there was a second medal of the Games for the erstwhile Aileen McGlynn and pilot Ellie Stone.

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