HomeSportBedlam, carnage & golden track night for Scotland

Bedlam, carnage & golden track night for Scotland


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Venues: Glasgow and across Scotland Dates: 3-13 AugustCoverage: Watch live on BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, BBC Sport website and app.Neah Evans called it carnage, but even that didn’t quite do justice to the faintly ridiculous race she had just won.The women’s madison at the World Championship started with 18 pairs from 18 different nations, Evans and Great Britain team-mate Elinor Barker among them. And it ended – after 120 laps of absolute bedlam on a febrile night in Glasgow – with significantly fewer than that. But, crucially, with Evans and Barker posing with a slab of gold the size of a dish plate around their necks.To the untrained eye, watching the race – in which the pairs tag in and out by flinging each other forward by the arm – is like following a swarm of bees. Such is the speed they are travelling, they all look the same. It’s exhausting.Keeping the heid among the chaos is a feat in itself, but 33-year-old Evans seemed a picture of poise. Even when a grievous crash wiped out three rivals in front of her, she didn’t flinch – instead thundering over the top of a couple of them as if they were speedbumps.At that stage, the British pair were in command, having led on points from the outset. But the delay while the victims were shovelled away reduced the contest to a nine-lap riot. Barker later disclosed she was raging their hard work had gone to waste. But Evans talked her off the ledge, then gave her the platform to dig out fourth place in the final sprint to seal the points needed to see off Australia and France.”We just had to keep it together,” Langbank-native Evans said. “I knew were were in a really good place and knew, if we got the luck on the day, we could do it and now we’ve come away as world champions.”That’s a special thing in itself, but to do it in front of a home crowd, in the velodrome you learned to ride on and with so many people in the stands cheering you on – incredible. I just love it, being in this atmosphere, the screaming, everything.”Evans now is a two-time world champion, having won points race gold in Paris last October, and will defend that title on Tuesday. As long as she has enough in her legs, she has a right good chance.Beyond that, she already has eyes on Paris. Compatriot Katie Archibald and Laura Kenny took Olympic madison gold in Tokyo, but with the latter unlikely to ride next summer, there is a strong chance of the Scots being paired. Nights like this will stand Evans in good stead for any carnage to come. ‘Tandemonium’ as Fachie claims 17th goldNeil Fachie has won so many world championship gold medals that they’re easier to weigh than count. But there was something a little bit special about the 39-year-old’s most recent two given they came at home.He and guide Matt Rotherham retained their 1km time trial title in Glasgow on Friday and did the same with their sprint crown amid a febrile atmosphere on Monday to take the wee Aberdonian’s tally to 17 golds.”Tandemonium” was how the velodrome announcer described it after Fachie and Rotherham – heads down, bums up, legs pumping – roared past their German opponents in the final few inches to salvage victory in race one. But there was almost a serenity about the manner in which the duo glided to success in the second hurl round, streaking away amid the clamour.”We don’t get to race in front of these crowds often and that buzz is what you’re chasing all the time,” Fachie told BBC Sport Scotland. “You don’t forget these moments. It’s not a bad day.” Carlin shows true colours on home trackHe came looking for gold and left with bronze. But, as he stood trackside slurping ginger, an increasing sense of satisfaction fell upon Jack Carlin.The 26-year-old from Paisley is no stranger to having to settle for an inferior hue of metal. He left the Olympics in 2020 with silver and bronze. His Commonwealth colours are the same. And now he has a fourth world bronze to add to a silver.This time, it came on his home track. The one he learned to ride on. After missing out on the gold medal race, there was no way Carlin was going to let his Polish opponent deny him. Not here. Not in front of this crowd. “I wasn’t sure where I’d end up at the start of the week, but I got close,” he told BBC Scotland. “If it wasn’t in Glasgow, I’d probably be disappointed, but the crowd still love that I got bronze. “I’ve still got the keirin to race in over the next couple of nights and that’s the one I was confident going into. I’m choking to get back out there and do it in front of this lot.”

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