Sir Bradley Wiggins made a winning return to international track cycling competition as Great Britain won team pursuit gold at the 2015 European Track Championships.
Wiggins, Owain Doull, Andy Tennant and Jon Dibben beat hosts Switzerland in the final in Grenchen, sealing a Great British double after the women’s quartet also struck gold.
In the absence of injured Ed Clancy, the British men used six riders through the three races, with Steven Burke and Matthew Gibson also in action during qualifying.
Burke, Doull, Tennant and Wiggins qualified fastest from the first round of qualifying, setting a time of 3.57.277 thanks to a blistering final kilometre, before Gibson replaced Tennant as they booked their place in the final.
Switzerland, with BMC Racing’s world team time trial champions Sylvan Dillier and Stefan Kueng in their quartet, actually broke the 3.57 mark to join them in the shoot-out for gold.
However, with Wiggins an ever-present for all three efforts, the Brits averaged a speed of 61.213km/h in the final to post a winning time of 3.55.243 – two seconds faster than the hosts.
In the women’s event, Great Britain also took advantage of the opportunity to test all of their riders, with Laura Trott, Elinor Barker, Ciara Horne and Jo Rowsell-Shand more than nine seconds faster than any other team in the first round of qualifying.