Australian’s handlebar snaps during Olympic team pursuit qualifying

It's not clear why Porter's handlebar broke.

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Australia’s qualifying run in the men’s Olympic team pursuit was thrown into disarray on Monday evening when Alex Porter’s handlebars broke mid-race.

Porter led Australia out of the start and was sitting at the back of the Australian line roughly 1,400 metres in the 4,000-metre event when the front end of his bike collapsed and he was thrown to the boards. Specific details are unknown but it appears the proprietary carbon stem belonging to the Argon-18 Pursuit frameset suffered a catastrophic failure. The 25-year-old hit his head in the incident and, after walking to the infield, was checked for concussion by medical staff.

The three Australian remaining riders stopped their effort and were granted a restart by commissaires.

Alex Porter remained in the line-up when Australia returned to the track, with visible burn marks on his nose, chin, and left arm. Australia went on to qualify fifth fastest with a time of 3:48.448, less than a second behind Great Britain, putting Australia out of gold medal contention.

Earlier in the event Italy set a new Olympic record with a 3:45.895 which was trumped shortly afterwards by the reigning world champions Denmark who posted a 3:45.014.

Update: Argon18 has released a statement
stating the broken handlebar was not theirs. This story is ongoing.

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