GB women’s qualify second fastest

Great Britain’s women qualified second fastest in the team pursuit quarter-finals on the opening day of the Track World Championships in Paris.

The quartet of Katie Archibald, Laura Trott, Elinor Barker and Joanna Rowsell face Canada in Thursday’s semi-final, with Australia the fastest qualifiers.

The British men’s team pursuit four also qualified second fastest in the 4km race, behind New Zealand.

But both the GB men and women were eliminated in the team sprint events.

The women’s team pursuit squad, who have won the last four world titles, finished 0.072 seconds behind the time set by Australia, who clocked four minutes 18.135 seconds and face New Zealand in Thursday’s other semi-final, with the final taking place later in the day.

In the men’s event, seven teams broke the four-minute barrier, with Ed Clancy, Steven Burke, Owain Doull and Andy Tennant clocking 3:57.716.

They will meet Germany in the semi-finals, with New Zealand up against Switzerland.

World Track Championships 2015: Sprinter Jason Kenny

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Track World Championships 2015: Jan van Eijden Jason Kenny

In the team sprint events, the GB men finished eighth in the three-man, three-lap event.

Philip Hindes was the seventh fastest over the first lap but fellow Olympic champion Jason Kenny moved them up to fourth.

However, Callum Skinner was unable to keep pace with Kenny as Britain faded.

“Basically me and Phil set off without Callum on our wheel. That was it,” said Kenny, who was part of the trio who won the event at last November’s Track World Cup in Mexico.

“Even Chris Hoy got it wrong once or twice. It happens to the best of us.”

Jess Varnish and Victoria Williamson were also eighth in the two-lap, two-women event, which was eventually won by the Chinese team of Gong Jinjie and Zhong Tianshi.

Both Varnish and Williamson are specialist starters but have been forced to team up in the absence of the

injured Becky James, who is recovering from a knee problem.

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