Croall turns up the heat

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Capital cycling star Bruce Croall shrugged off chilly conditions to launch his defence of the Meadowbank National Track League title in style, writes COLIN RENTON.

With the previous week’s programme having been washed out, the City of Edinburgh rider, who is bidding for an unprecedented seventh successive victory in the competition, was desperate to lay down an early marker.

And the former British kilometre champion proved that he has wintered well when he powered to victory in the opening event, the three-kilometre scratch race. Croall was given an early warning that he faces a battle to retain the silverware. But, after failing to score in the elimination event, he was back to winning ways in the 10km points race.

The women’s competition started with a bang when three riders crashed in the opening event, but they subsequently produced some competitive racing. An impressive overall showing by youngster Katie Archibald (Edinburgh Racers) saw her lead the way. Meanwhile, her team-mate Sean Noon chalked up two wins and a second place to lead the youths competition.