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Jennifer Valente repeats as world champion in track cycling’s omnium

Jennifer Valente

US rider Jennifer Valente celebrates winning gold in the women’s Elite Scratch Race Final at the Sir Chris Hoy velodrome during the Cycling World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland on August 4, 2023. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP) (Photo by OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

AFP via Getty Images

American Jennifer Valente repeated as world champion in the omnium, giving her three global titles in the event when including her Tokyo Olympic gold medal.

“To back up last year is really special in a different kind of way,” Valente, 28, said. “I was just elated last year and so excited and had reached a career goal.”

The omnium, which debuted at the Olympics in 2012, includes four races that take place on the same day: the scratch race, the tempo race, the elimination race and the points race.

For the first three races, riders earn 40 points for a win, 38 for second and 36 for third and on down a descending scale.

In the final 80-lap points race, points are awarded for a sprint every 10 laps, including double points for the last sprint. Cyclists also gain and lose points by lapping the field or getting lapped.

At worlds in Glasgow, Scotland, Valente won the tempo race and finished second in the scratch and elimination races for a 20-point lead going into the final points race. She held on to prevail by nine points over Amalie Dideriksen of Denmark.

In Tokyo, Valente became the first U.S. woman to win any Olympic track cycling event.

She also owns four world titles as part of the U.S. women’s team pursuit, plus an Olympic silver and bronze medal in that event.

Earlier at these worlds, Valente won the scratch race and took bronze in the elimination race, which are not Olympic events.

She broke Sarah Hammer’s record for the most world track cycling championships medals for an American.

Valente, who got her start riding mountain and BMX bikes in her San Diego neighborhood, is now up to 17 career world medals.

She is one Olympic medal shy of Hammer’s record four by a female American cyclist.

The women’s omnium is on the final day of the Olympics. In Tokyo, Valente’s win helped the U.S. overtake China atop the gold-medal standings.