I just finished the Sprints at the first World Cup of the season! It feels more like the World Championships, because everyone is here! I think it will be like this for all four World Cups this season, being that everyone wants a shot at being top 9 in the World to qualify for Olympics.
I qualified 8th position with 11.41. I was really happy with that, especially since I did 11.70 last year. That put me right in the thick of things The cut off time to make top 16 was 11.5, so everyone was on really good form. My 1/8th final was against a Chinese rider, who also ran 11.4. I took control from the front and kept her on my hip and won! Then I was up against no. 1 seed Willy Kanis (Nederlands). She rode a blazing 11.16! The first ride was excellent and she couldn’t get by, so I took the win! The second ride, Willy and I went head to head through 3 and 4 and she got me at the line. Then, the third ride, I tried to correct any mistakes in the second ride and she really just had more speed than me. They were three really tough rides and I was a bit gased at the end But luckily, we had a bit of time to get some sugar in before the 5-8th ride.
The 5-8th ride seemed more like a final. It was myself, Clara Sanchez (former World Champ), Simona (fast Lithuanian), and Victoria Pendleton (current world champ!). I drew no. 1 position. It was definitely a fight for the front, since it is hard to pass on this track. Victoria tried to overtake me, but I fought to keep the front. I held everyone off except Clara Sanchez, which put me 6th! It was a great start to the season and I will build on this for Beijing in a week.
Off to the track to watch some bike racing. We have lots of Americans out there tonight!
I will try and post some pics later.