Jenny Holl and Anna Docherty and Rhys Britton and Fred Wright were crowned national Madison champions at the Derby Arena on Saturday evening.
Holl and Docherty claimed the women’s title by two points over Ella Barnwell and Amelia Sharpe, while Britton and Wright were completely dominant in the men’s event.
In the 125-lap women’s race, Holl and Docherty’s timing and strength on the sprints were the difference, as all teams struggled to make any potentially lap-gaining attacks stick. The duo built a lead steadily over the race, scoring consistently to build a lead of as many as eight points.
That was the margin going into the final, double-point sprint, and although Barnwell and Sharpe – still with an eye on gold – did their bit for their cause by claiming the 10 points, Holl and Docherty ensured that they crossed the line in third to secure an overall victory by two points – 40 to 38. Eluned King and Sophie Lewis took bronze.
Holl said: “It was really good. We train together all the time so we know how each other ride, and we really nailed it as a pair, and really worked to our strengths.”
The men’s race was a far more clear-cut affair, as Britton and Wright rode superbly to clock up over 100 points and control the event from start to finish.
Their lead was already substantial when they gained a lap alongside two other pairings – Matti Dobbins and Alex Haines and Alfie George and Max Rushby with 49 laps to go, then Britton finished the duo’s race in fitting style by producing a storming final lap to claim the maximum 10 points and take their overall total up to 110.
Dobbins and Haines and George and Rushby both finished on 39, with the former winning the silver medal by virtue of a higher-placed finish in the final sprint.
Afterwards, Wright said: “It went a lot better than we thought it would, to be honest. It went perfectly – even after the first three sprints I thought we were riding it in the right way, and we’re really, really happy to carry that through the rest of the race and get the win.”
The National Madison and Omnium Championships continue today, when both the men’s and women’s omnium competitions will take place.