Two early Aussie golds
By Guy Hand
20:20 AEST Tue Oct 5 2010

Anna Meares wrote another chapter in Australian cycling's favourite fairytale as Australia picked up two early gold medals on the opening day of track competition at the Commonwealth Games.

Three-time world champion Meares zipped around Indira Gandhi Sports Complex in a new Games record time of 33.758 seconds to defend her 500m time trial title on Tuesday and lead home an Aussie 1-2 finish.

Meares' training partner, 22-year-old Kaarle McCulloch from NSW, won the silver in 34.780, with Wales' Becky James the bronze in 35.236.

Then West Australian 22-year-old Scott Sunderland added another gold to get the youthful Australian team off to a perfect start, breaking Sir Chris Hoy's Commonwealth record in the men's 1000m time trial.

Sunderland clocked one minute 1.411 seconds, ahead of silver medallist Mohd Rizal Tisin of Malaysia in 1:02.768, with New Zealand's Eddie Dawkins taking bronze in 1:02.777.

Meares, 27, went into the event a warm favourite to win back-to-back Commonwealth titles and break her own Games record.

And the Adelaide-based rider, who produced a remarkable comeback for silver at the Beijing Olympics just seven months after breaking her neck in a high-speed crash, didn't disappoint.

It adds further lustre to a decorated career, with Meares now confident she is well on track to make her cycling comeback further storied at the London Olympics in 2012.

"I don't think I've reached my peak - I'm only 27 currently and for a female track cyclist, you're looking at your late 20s, early 30s to get your peak performance," Meares said.

"With another two years under my belt, I'm quite confident - especially with rides like today - those little improvements are going to still happen."

Meares is eyeing three gold medals in Delhi, and looks certain to pocket a second on Wednesday when she and McCulloch partner in the team sprint.

"Anna and I are big believers we have to be in the top five in the world to be competitive in the team sprint, so we're sitting pretty good at the moment for London," McCulloch said.

"Anna's a great opponent and she is world champion in this event, so she's pretty hard to beat."

Most popular articles
Spotted....Professional surfer
strikes in fashion
Wide World of Sports TV partners
AFL Footy ShowAustralia's favourite team takes you through the week in AFL.Wide World of SportsCatch up with Ken Sutcliffe and the team on Wide World of Sports.NRL Footy ShowFatty and the gang bring you an entertaining look at rugby league.Footy ClassifiedOur award winning panel tell it how it really is in the AFL world.