Great Britain claim first gold

Great Britain won their first gold medal at the Track Cycling World Championships as Ireland, Hong Kong, Australia and Germany also triumphed.

Olympic champions Laura Trott and Dani King celebrated a third successive women's team pursuit title as Elinor Barker savoured her first rainbow jersey in Minsk.

A fifth World Championships title in six years means Trott and King are unbeaten in the three-woman, three-lap event since February 2011, when representing a junior British team at the Manchester Track World Cup.

They have won three world titles in three attempts and London 2012 Olympic gold in that time.

Barker, the 18-year-old school girl from Cardiff, slotted in seamlessly to the space vacated by 2012 world and Olympic champion Joanna Rowsell.

After qualifying almost two seconds clear of Australia, Britain finished the final in three minutes 18.140 seconds, with Annette Edmondson, Ashlee Ankudinoff and Melissa Hoskins 1.773secs adrift.

Canada were third.

The event was added to the World Championships programme in 2008 and Britain have won every time, apart from in Copenhagen in 2010.

King said: "We just work really hard and come together as a team we ride as one, not three individuals.

"We've got so much trust in each other and belief. That's key, every time we get on the line."

While many athletes have spoken of a London 2012 hangover, Trott - double Olympic champion and defending her world omnium title this weekend - dismissed the suggestion.

"No way," said Trott, who will not be 21 until April. "Who wouldn't want to win another stripy jumper?"

Australia's Michael Hepburn successfully defended his men's 4km individual pursuit title, with Ireland's Martyn Irvine second.

An hour later Irvine went one better with gold in the men's scratch race.

Austria's Andreas Mueller was second, with Luke Davison of Australia third.

Irvine's win was Ireland's first gold medal in modern World Championships; Henry Reynolds did win a gold in 1896.

Irvine said: "I thought my chances were gone after the pursuit final. My legs were hollow.

"I just stuck to what I know, just committed 100% and it paid off."

Germany's Rene Enders, Stefan Botticher and Maximilian Levy won gold in the men's team sprint in 43.495. New Zealand were second and France third.

Olympic champions Philip Hindes and Jason Kenny finished sixth, with Kian Emadi completing the line-up.

Hong Kong's Lee Wai Sze won the women's 500m time-trial in 33.973. Miriam Welte of Germany was second in 33.996, with Britain's Becky James third.