CYCLING New Zealand owned up to an embarrassing blunder that saw their men's pursuit team disqualified from their rideoff for bronze and took the gloss off the opening day on the track.

The New Zealanders were red-carded for having an illegal bike on the start line, missing out on their bronze decider against Canada.

Wales were promoted into New Zealand's place; a big blow for the team of Regan Gough, Campbell Stewart, Nick Kergozou, Tom Sexton and Jared Gray.

The team appealed the decision, but it was denied.

The quartet had clocked 3 minutes 56.294 seconds and were sitting second until England's 3:55.399 pushed them into third place before they were disqualified.

Cycling New Zealand High Performance boss Martin Barras has taken responsibility for the snafu, which cost the quartet a chance of a bronze medal.

"There are regulations that pertain to the exact set-up the bike can be configured in, and one of our bikes was found to be outside of those configurations by five or six millimetres in the front cockpit (of the bike)."

A medal was within their reach.
A medal was within their reach.

"It's a failing on the team's part, it's a failing on my part as the director of the programme and I can guarantee you that no other bike is going to go onto the track with a set-up that's not conformed to the regulations.

"It was a particularly painful apology to make to all the riders for what just happened."

The men's team pursuit's disqualification concluded a hectic period at the velodrome, with it initially being announced over the velodrome PA that it was the women's team pursuit who had been disqualified.

Thankfully the women's team was free to ride in the gold medal race but ultimately going down to a dominant Australian team.

This article originally appeared in the NZ Herald.



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