Second placed Britain's Neah Evans (2ndL), Britain's Britain's Megan Barker (3rdL), Britain's Anna Morris and Britain's Josie Knight celebrate with silver medals on the podium for the Women's Team Pursuit finals race during the second day of the UEC European Track Cycling Championships at the Omnisport indoor arena in Apeldoorn, on January 11, 2024. (Photo by JOHN THYS / AFP) (Photo by JOHN THYS/AFP via Getty Images)

Megan Barker And Jess Roberts Win Silver For Team GB


By Hannah Blackwell

Megan Barker and Jess Roberts both had to settle for silver medals at the European Track Cycling Championships in the Netherlands.

While Great Britain claimed gold in the men’s team pursuit, the GB women – including the Welsh duo – had to settle for silver.

The British squad of Josie Knight, Barker, Anna Morris, Roberts and Neah Evans took a silver medal as the world champions were beaten by Italy.

Barker, who claimed a first European medal, said: “When you lose the gold ride off, it takes a second to realise you have still won silver, so we will look back and be really happy with it.”

The GB men’s squad of Dan Bigham, Ethan Hayter, Ethan Vernon, Ollie Wood and Charlie Tanfield edged out world champions, Denmark, with a time of three minutes 45.218 seconds to win by a margin of 1.154secs.

It was a first team pursuit European title in nine years for Britain, with Italy taking bronze ahead of Germany.

European success will also boost British hopes of qualifying for the Paris Olympics, after they were dented following a crash which prematurely ended Britain’s home world championships in Glasgow last August.

Vernon – who rode for Team Wales at the 2018 Commonwealth Games before switching to England for Birmingham 2022 – said: “It is one of the last races we will do against the guys here, so it is nice to take a good time and take some confidence going into Paris.

“A few of us are going off onto the road now with our teams, so we are not going to be back together for a few months.

“It was nice to have a high like that before we go off and do our own things for a bit, then come back for the last Nations Cup … I think it will get better going into Paris.”

Joe Truman finished fourth in the men’s one kilometre time trial final. Matteo Bianchi took gold for Italy ahead of the Dutchman Daan Kool, with Melvin Landerneau winning bronze for France by just 0.037secs.

Wales’ world champion Emma Finucane will look to stay on course to add the European individual sprint title after reaching the semi-finals.

Finucane controlled her quarter-final against the French rider Marie Divine Taky Kouame to progress 2-0 and will next face Mathilde Gros for a chance to ride for gold.

Sophie Capewell was edged out 2-1 by Germany’s Emma Hinze, while Sophie Lewis finished 13th in the women’s scratch race.

Hayter, who missed out in Glasgow having been unable to recover from a broken collarbone, was back on the track again for the men’s Madison alongside Mark Stewart as they finished seventh.

On Friday, Vernon will compete in the men’s scratch race, while Bigham and Tanfield take on the individual pursuit while Evans races the four-event women’s omnium.


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