Glaetzer track cycling's new sprint king
Matthew Glaetzer is track cycling's new sprint king after storming to victory at the world championships in The Netherlands as Australia's mini-team continues to excel.
The 25-year-old South Australian eliminated defending world champion Denis Dmitriev of Russia and Frenchman Sebastien Vigier on his way to the gold medal clash.
Then Glaetzer crushed rising British star Jack Carlin 2-0 in the gold medal clash, becoming the first Australian to claim the title since Sean Eadie in 2002.
"I have been wanting to pull that jersey on for so long, so to see the Australian flag raised above me was such a special moment," said Glaetzer, who had earned five top-six finishes at the world championships since 2013, including the 2016 silver medal.
I have finally backed up the speed, finally put the money where the legs are so to speak."
Carlin was so spent he admitted feeling ill feeling on the podium.
"I was very close to throwing up," said Carlin.
"Throwing up during the Australian national anthem probably wouldn't have gone down very well ahead of the (Gold Coast 2018) Commonwealth Games."
Glaetzer's triumph meant all four members of Australia's team had won medals at the world titles with one day of competition remaining.
Cycling Australia prioritised next month's Commonwealth Games and sent only its four best hopes to the world titles, skipping some events it excels in like the team pursuit.
Remarkably, Australia was sitting fourth on the medal table with Glaetzer joined by points race gold medallist Cameron Meyer, women's sprint silver medallist Stephanie Morton and Callum Scotson, who took bronze in the 10km scratch race.
Glaetzer paid tribute to former Australian cycling team head sprint coach Gary West who lost his battle with motor neurone disease in August last year.
"I can imagine how happy and emotional he would be right now," said Glaetzer.
"He put so much time and effort into me, he was so passionate about the sport and put so much of his life into his athletes and my thoughts go out to the West family today.
"He is a big part of this achievement today."
Glaetzner will be strongly fancied to add to his gold in the in the 1km time trial on Sunday night (ADET).
In Manchester in November, Glaetzner became the first man to go under the one-minute barrier in a 1km race.
It's a benchmark he bettered during the Australian track nationals in February.
Tickets to the GC2018 Cycling events are exhausted however, there are still great tickets available across 12 sports.