Katie Archibald MBE, took an astonishing three gold medals at the British National Track Championships held in Manchester over the weekend.
Starting her winning streak on Friday in the individual pursuit posting the fastest time in qualifying by 10 seconds, Archibald was in the gold medal ride against Emily Nelson later that evening. 22-year-old Katie, went out of the starting gate like a rocket, she meant business, catching Nelson within 5 and a half laps of the finals, taking the gold medal and the prolific British national jersey. Team mate Emily Kay qualified in 4th place, and rode for bronze in the final against Neah Evans. After an exciting battle between the pair, Emily had to settle for 4th place missing out on a medal by 1.7 seconds, making it successful debut rides for Katie and Emily in Team WNT Pro Cycling colours.
‘I was happy with my ride, but I was disappointed not to get the bronze medal, however it was a positive start to my Team WNT Pro Cycling debut’ says Emily.
Saturday was another successful day with Katie and Emily lining up in the 10km scratch race. Both riders gained a lap in the 40-lap race along with four other riders, but it was Katie who came out on top in a fast and furious bunch sprint, with Emily finishing strongly in 5th. Katie was back on track shortly afterwards in the semi-final of the keirin, in which she won putting the endurance rider into the finals of a sprint event. With different tactics being used by Archibald than you’d usually see in a keirin event, Katie took her opponents by surprise, using the height of the track like in a flying 200metre effort. In a close finish on the line, Katie picked up a surprise silver medal behind Sophie Capewell, taking her medal tally up to three.
The final day of the championships was the 'points race'. Emily and Katie qualified comfortably in the morning, and had to wait until later in the day until the final. In the 20km final it was a constant battle between Archibald, fellow Olympic Champion Elinor Barker and Neah Evans for the points and lap gains. Emily Kay tried her luck at gaining a lap but it wasn’t to be after being chased down. It was tit for tat between Katie and Neah in the closing stages with Archibald leading by 1 point in the last few sprints. With double points, available on the final sprint, Archibald had to ensure she scored here to secure her third national title of the weekend, luckily, she did and won by 5 points from Emily Nelson.
Claude Sun, Global MD WNT says ‘I am thrilled to see how well Katie and Emily’s debut has gone at the British Championships. Katie certainly showed her strength in each event, and for her to come away with Team WNT Pro Cycling’s first national title of 2017, it’s fantastic.’
‘The one I really wanted was the individual pursuit, and after I won that on Friday, I was raring to go for the rest of the weekend. It was the best possible outcome and I am delighted with how the whole weekend went, it was great to finally pull on the Team WNT jersey.’ Katie said.