Fernando Gaviria described the final round of the men’s Omnium at the Track World Championships as an “epic battle” and he took great pride in being able to emerge victoriously and defend his world title.
“This jersey gives me great pride, being able to repeat it, two years on the run is something amazing,” the 21-year-old told Cyclingnews after the points race which concluded the omnium. “It was an epic battle. The riders went all out. Everyone was really strong, and it’s a great honour to retain the title.
“I’m a bit crazy, I don’t think much about the race and try to do it as well as possible, to be as calm as possible not to commit silly errors that at my age would be normal to make.”
Gaviria’s title defence didn’t get off to the best of starts on Friday as he finished down in 10th in the scratch race, later citing nerves after several months away from the track.
It didn’t take him long to find his groove, however, and he won both the individual pursuit and elimination race before taking second in the kilo on Saturday afternoon and overhauling Italian Elia Viviani in the points race.
“The Omnium started badly for me. I started with fear, with nerves about getting caught up in a crash – I didn’t want the same thing as last year to happen,” he explained. “But then we were able to make the most of the strength I had in my legs, and take another victory.”
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