NATIONAL Team Pursuit Championship
Manchester Wheelers were never threatened as they made it eight in a row in the 4,000 metres team pursuit, going within a second of their 1987 championship record to beat Dinnington RC in the final.
The Wheelers quartet of Chris Boardman, Paul Curran, Glen Sword and Roger Ward led the qualifiers from a low entry of seven, caught semi-final opponents Zenith CC with four laps to go, and were always on top in the decider - finishing in the same straight as Dinnington despite shedding Ward before halfway.
The victory was sweet for double Commonwealth Games gold medallist, Paul Curran, who rode in three of Manchester's previous wins. For two years he has concentrated on road racing, and only returned to track-pursuit because the club was short of riders. It also confirmed his fitness for the Olympics after crashing through a car windscreen last month.
The closest match of the series was the semi-final repeat of last year between Dinnington, Paul Wain in place of Mark Turner, and Team Haverhill, the winners then, who had Bruce Drew and Guy Rowland taking over from Mark Beevers and Gareth Smith.
It was neck and neck to half-distance with Dinnington just in front and then Haverhill, driven on by Sturgess, took over. But Drew rode up the banking and Dinnington kept a good formation to go well clear over the last two laps as their opponents were reduced to disarray.
Junior medallist Paul Panton replaced Drew for the bronze ride and Haverhill were always on top to win by 6 seconds.
MANCHESTER WHEELERS-TRUMANNS (Chris Boardman, Paul Curran, Glen Sword, Roger Ward) 4-33.99 bt Dinnington RC (Robert Coull, Robert Kennison, Paul Wain, Alastair Wood) 4-43.21.
Third place - Team Haverhill (Simon Lillistone, Paul Panton, Guy Rowland, Colin Sturgess) 4-38.85 bt Zenith CC A Paul Carpenter, John Lucas, Martin Perrett, Adam Wykes) 4-45.36.
Dinnington RC 4-38.080 bt Team Haverhill 4-44.158; Manchester Wh bt Zenith CC Act in 3-12.47.
Manchester Wh 4-40.060; Dinnington RC 4-43.618; Team Haverhill 4-44.878; Zenith CC A 4-51.925; Polytechnic CC 4-54.525; Zenith CC B 5-12.182; Kenilworth Wh 5-21.085.