WATCH: Olympics fright for Sarah Lee after nasty crash in World Championships
London 2012 bronze medallist suffers painful return to same track as rival ploughs into her on the finish line
Hong Kong’s Sarah Lee Wai-sze suffered a painful return to the track where she won Olympic bronze as a rival crashed into her in the first round.
Lee landed painfully on her right hip as Russian rider Anastasiia Voinova skidded into her on the finish line after being jolted by Ukraine’s Liubov Basova as she came up the inside.
With the Rio Olympics just a few months away, it was a worrying sight for Hong Kong, but Lee seemed to avoid serious damage. She struggled back to her feet but was never going to challenge in the remaining rounds and failed to make the finals, finishing fourth in heat 2, behind China’s Guo Shang, eventual winner Kristina Vogel and Britain’s Becky James.
WATCH: Lee is taken out
Germany’s Vogel saw off rival and defending champion Anna Meares of Australia in the final, clinching the 26th world medal of her career, with James third.
Coach Shen Jinkang did not say how badly his charge had been affected by the crash, but said she had suffered a number of injuries.
“The Russian rider tried to come through from inside when dashing for the finish and caused the crash,” said the coach. “Lee’s head was slightly injured and some scratches on her skin. There were also knocks on her leg muscles.”
“I knew when I had my wheel free and I could just go forward there would be a medal,” Vogel said. “I have special memories here, winning the Olympic [team sprint] gold medal, so to come back and win a jersey it’s amazing. My skin is crawling.”
Lee still has medal hopes in the 500m time trial and the women’s sprint and will hope the fall hasn’t caused serious damage.
Vionova, who was crowned the team sprint champion the previous day,was disqualified for entering the sprinter’s lane when the opponent was already there.
Shen also praised the performance of Yang Qianyu in the scratch as it was the first time a Hong Kong rider finished top eight in the world event.
In other events, Australia overhauled Britain on the final lap to win the men’s team pursuit.
“That is the sixth rainbow jersey for me, and I’m sure it’s the most special,” Australian rider Michael Hepburn said. “We just stuck to our plan, and rode the times we wanted to ride coming into the final, where they probably laid it down a little bit more.
“What got us across the line tonight was six solid guys, no superheroes, and getting the best out of each other. The boys were super hungry, and I just told them before I went out we are on the verge of doing something magical, and they didn’t let the pressure get to them.”
Hepburn believed a sub 3:50 will be needed to win the Olympic title in Rio de Janeiro.
The last time Wiggins competed at a track worlds was in 2008, when he came away with three titles.
“It’s mixed emotions,” Wiggins said. “Initially, you’re gutted – I am especially – and you try to put a brave face on, be sportsmanlike and say congratulations.
“It’s really disappointing [for us]. But at the same time, when we look where we come from, we’re close.”
Laura Trott won Britain’s first medal of the championships with gold in the scratch race.
Joachim Eilers won the one kilometer time trial, setting a new velodrome record of 1:00.042 to upgrade his silver from 2015.
Additional reporting: Associated Press