Ed Clancy hurt by World Track Cycling Championship defeat, but Britain will have the last laugh
DEFEAT to Australia in the final of the team pursuit at the World Track Cycling Championships hurt Ed Clancy and his teammates.
But the double Olympic champion whose family live in Tetbury could take plenty of positives from the performance in Minsk.
The new-look team of Clancy, Steven Burke, Andy Tennant and Sam Harrison were more than four seconds behind a dominant Australian quartet on their first major test of the 2016 Olympiad.
But rather than dwell on any negatives, Clancy - the senior member of the team who won gold at successive Olympic Games chose to accentuate the positives.
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And with more than three years of improvement and training to come before the 2016 Olympics in Rio, Clancy is confident that the British will have the last laugh.
Clancy said: "It does hurt to lose to the Aussies, but it's bike racing, you can't win all the time.
"British cycling is an Olympic led programme and this is the first stage of the Olympic cycle.
"We would have rather won today than finish second, but this is part of a long process and we have got new faces in the team.
"We are in a lot better position than we were in the last Olympic cycle, so it's not all bad news.
"It's never nice to lose to the Aussies but I'd rather have the world and Olympic golds from last year if it meant finishing second here.
"It's disappointing, but if you don't look at it so black and white there's a lot of positives."
Australia led throughout the 16-lap final, even though Glenn O'shea dropped out entering the final kilometre, leaving Alex Edmondson, Michael Hepburn and Alex Morgan to hold off Britain in the finale and win in three minutes 56.751 seconds.
Britain trailed home in 4mins 00.967 seconds to take silver. While Denmark held off the challenge of Spain to claim the bronze medals.
O'shea said: "We knew we had to go out hard. Great Britain is known for going out hard and putting you under pressure so we wanted to go out and put the pressure on them for once.
"We got out in front early and managed to hold on."
Hepburn added: "We've been beaten the last couple of times. Obviously it's not payback and doesn't make up for the losses we had last year.
"But it's nice to get up with a new group of guys and really exciting to see the next couple of years are in good hands in the team pursuit."
Australia joined Germany, the United States and France in striking gold on the opening day of the Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk as Great Britain missed out on a title.