Olympic medallist last year, world champion this year. There is no stopping Hong Kong's Sarah Lee Wai-sze in her pursuit of greatness. The 25-year-old showed a new-found maturity to win the women's 500-metre time trial at the World Track Championships in Minsk, Belarus, becoming Hong Kong's third cyclist to clinch a world title. Lee clocked 33.973 seconds in the two-lap event - just missing her own Asian record of 33.945 - but edged out experienced German Miriam Welte, with Britain's new hope Rebecca James third. "I was very nervous before the start but I knew I could win," said Lee, who won a bronze medal in the keirin at last year's Olympics in London. "I hope I will do even better next year because I know many better riders have not come here." Coach Shen Jinkang paid tribute to Lee's determination to achieve success at the highest level. "She did not take a big break to celebrate after winning a bronze medal at last summer's Olympic Games and kept the momentum to prepare for future competitions," said Shen. "After winning a gold medal in the time trial at the 2010 Asian Games, she was determined to scale a higher level of success in the sprinting event and finally made it this time after a number of failures." After winning a gold medal in the time trial at the 2010 Asian Games, she was determined to scale a higher level of success Lee was ranked sixth after the first 125 metres and third after the first lap, but gradually increased her speed and did enough to beat Welte (33.996 seconds) and James (34.133). Lee's winning time was still some way off the world record of 33.10 seconds set by Australia's Anna Meares, who won the world title in Melbourne last year. "She did not start the race well as she had to overcome a slow start to beat the German, but it also proved she has become a more mature rider," said Shen. "The time trial is a big challenge in explosive speed and the power to maintain the speed despite growing lactic acid in the leg muscles. Although Lee was a bit slow in the beginning, she was able to fight back inch by inch. It was a marvellous performance." Newly elected Hong Kong Cycling Association chairman Leung Hung-tak said the result came as little surprise. "She has already proven herself at the Olympic Games and now did it again at the world championships," said Leung, who expected Lee to face tough challenges in her next two events. "Lee's absolute speed is excellent, but she needs some clever tactics and strategies in both the sprint and keirin where luck also plays an important role," he said. She will face tough challenges again from Welte, another German Kristina Vogel and Guo Shuang of China.