Updated: Friday, 28 February 2014 13:29 | By Agence France-Presse

British women extend team pursuit reign at track cycling Worlds

Great Britain retained their women's team pursuit world crown Thursday, rallying to vanquish Canada to claim Britain's first gold of the 2014 track cycling World Championships.

British women extend team pursuit reign at track cycling Worlds

Great Britain's Team compete during the Women's team Pursuit race at the UCI track cycling World Cup competition in Cali, Colombia, on February 27, 2014 - by Luis Acosta

Laura Trott and Joanna Rowsell -- members of the team that won Olympic gold before home fans in London in 2012 -- Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald triumphed with a time of 4min 23.407sec in the four-kilometer race.

They had qualified fastest by two seconds in blustery conditions earlier in the day, but it was Canada who seized the initiative in the final, opening up a lead of 1.10sec at the halfway stage before Britain stormed back, gaining control over the final 750 meters to beat Canada's Laura Brown, Jasmin Glaesser, Allison Beveridge and Stephanie Roorda by 1.29sec.

Australia (Annette Edmondson, Amy Cure, Melissa Hoskins, Isabella King) took bronze, catching the Poland squad with around a kilometer to go in the race for third place.

Germany's Miriam Welte won the women's 500m time trial gold with a time of 33.451sec, denying Australian Anna Meares a record 11th world title.

Welte had already claimed gold in the women's team sprint on Wednesday, teaming with Kristina Vogel for a victory over China.

Meares settled for silver in 33.548 with Anastasia Voinova of Russia taking bronze.

Although the 30-year-old from South Australia couldn't add a fifth 500m time trial gold to her World Championship cache, she did claim her 21st World Championships medal. 

And she'll have two more chances to add a record 11th world title to her resume in sprint and keirin events before competition concludes.

Meares currently shares the record of 10 career world titles with France's Felicia Ballanger.

Defending 500m time trial world champion Sarah Lee Wai Sze of Hong Kong finished sixth.

Australia's Alexander Edmonson, 20, won the men's individual pursuit, beating Switzerland's Stefan Kueng in the final.

Edmondson clocked 4min 22.582sec over the four kilometer race, averaging 54.840 km/h to edge Kueng by 41 hundredths of a second.

Edmondson claimed his second gold medal in as many days, after riding on the Australian squad that rallied to retain their men's team pursuit title Wednesday.

New Zealand's Marc Ryan earned bronze, beating Ireland's Ryan Mullen in the race for third place.

Francois Pervis of France, 29, won the men's keirin gold, finishing ahead of Colombian Fabian Puerta and Mattijs Buchli of the Netherlands in the final.

The one-kilometer world record-holder notched his first world title in the event and will try to add two more individual titles before the week is out -- in Friday's one-kilometer time trial and the weekend's sprint.

Germany's Joachim Eilers finished fourth ahead of Britain's defending champion Jason Kenny.

Russia's Ivan Kovalev won the men's 15 km scratch race ahead of defending champion Martyn Irvine of Ireland and Hong Kong's Cheung King-Lok.

Cheung's finish gave Hong Kong another world championships medal in the non-Olympic event, after Kwok Ho-Ting's triumph in 2011.

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