Sarah Hammer on Sunday became the first American woman to earn three medals in a single cycling world championship after finishing second in the women’s omnium at the UCI track world championships.
Hammer moved from fourth to second place on the final day of competition, adding a silver medal to her gold in the individual pursuit and silver in the team pursuit.
“Yesterday was a little bit of a rough day for me, but the nature of the omnium is to be able to kind of reset after a bad event,” said Hammer. “My goal coming into it was to be able to get top three and that was achieved after a hard-fought battle. I’m super pumped to have been able to win the individual pursuit, to have taken silver with my teammates and be able to win another silver today.”
Hammer took first in the individual-pursuit portion of the omnium with a time of 3:34.012. The win moved the four-time individual pursuit world champion into bronze-medal position. Unfortunately, Tara Whitten was second, putting the Canadian into first place by seven points with only two events remaining.
Just as in Saturday’s points race, Dutchwoman Kirsten Wild, who was sitting in silver-medal position, marked Hammer’s every move in the 10km omnium scratch race. At midrace omnium leader Whitten took off and lapped the field with Tatsiana Sharakova (Belarus) in tow; seemingly sealing the omnium victory.
Hammer made a break with three to go and outran all but Evgenya Romanyuta (Russia) for fourth. However, Wild finished just behind Hammer in fifth, allowing the American to close the gap on the silver medal by only one point.
Heading into the time trial, Hammer sat a single point behind Wild, a sprint and road race specialist. Hammer nailed a 36.204 over the 500 meters to finish fourth in the final omnium event. It was not enough to overcome Whitten, who finished fifth in the event, but earned her the silver.