It was a silver and two bronze medals for Australia at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Berlin, with Women's Team Sprint duo Steph Morton and Kaarle McCulloch claiming silver, Men's Team Sprint Nathan Hart, Matthew Richardson and Thomas Cornish finding bronze and Morton finding the podium a second time with bronze in the Women's Kierin, her first World Championship medal in the discipline.
Of their silver medal, Morton said her and teammate McCulloch were ecstatic.
“I think we are the happiest silver medallists you have ever met. We had to go through some pretty dark clouds to even look at the rainbows here, so to come away with the silver I think I am even more stoked than last year.
Morton also went on to win her maiden World Championship Keirin medal in a dramatic end to the final.
Worlds 2020 has come to an end. Really pleased with the Team Sprint with my gal @stephmorton28 🥈! I wasn’t in the form I was hoping I could be in here for the other events but that is the way the cookie crumbles sometimes! On reflection if I were to compare to last year I should be disappointed and I am in one sense but I also did everything I could, I executed everything to the best I could with what I had to offer physically and sometimes it’s just not good enough and that’s sport! So onto the next one!
"It was one of those days where I was in the groove, I was doing things right, I made minimal mistakes, and the main thing was I was having fun, and it all paid off," Morton said.
The Men's Team Sprint team was without Matt Glaetzer due to a recent injury, but with Tom Cornish taking his place the team delivered, bringing home bronze.
“I didn’t think this would be the outcome, to be honest. I just took it race by race today and it came together. I’m just really happy how I rode and the team rode,” Cornish said after the race.
Despite Australia exiting a Track World Championships without a gold medal for the first time in twelve years, Australian Cycling Team Performance Director Simon Jones remains focussed on the team's overarching strategy which is aiming to deliver success at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
"Australia has had a pretty glittering history of winning world titles - in 2017 we won more world titles than you could poke a stick at and that is not what we are trying to achieve this year," Jones said.
"We want to win in Tokyo. Yes, we were aiming for podium performances here, or very close to, and you can't hide the fact we have come up short in some areas. But we have to learn from it.
#Berlin2020 “It was unfortunate with Matt Glaetzer getting injured quite recently, but we backed Tom Cornish here and he delivered exceptionally today. It was really great to string three solid rides together.” @nathan_hart4 on winning team sprint bronze with @matty__richo & @thomascornish_ #auscyclingteam | The #AusCyclingTeam is proudly supported by: Cycling Australia : @cyclingaustralia Sport Australia : @sportaus Australian Olympic Team : @ausolympicteam Paralympics Australia : @ausparalympics Commonwealth Games Australia : @commgamesaus Santini : @santini_cycling Science In Sport : @scienceinsport Premax: @premax.co Stage & Screen : @stageandscreenau Training Peaks: @trainingpeaks Argon18 : @argon18bike Kask : @kask_cycling Bont Cycling : @bontcycling Vittoria Tires : @vittoria_australia ZIPP : @Zippspeed |
"We tried several different things here, and we have to settle on a plan and then train to it. Now we have finished this period. We gave everyone opportunities, and now we have to gather the facts and make some decisions now.
"There are five months to the Games, which is a long time."
Jones was impressed by the results of debutants Maeve Plouffe, 20, Luke Plapp, 19, and Tom Cornish, 20, who moved into the team via the Podium Potential Academy.
"The youngsters did very well, it is great to see, and that is a testament to the Academy in that we are providing opportunities to younger talent. They also provide upward pressure, and that is really good to see."