Jason Kenny missed the first of his three chances to move clear of Sir Chris Hoy’s Olympic gold medal tally as Great Britain took silver in the men’s team sprint in Izu.
Kenny, tied with Hoy on six, rode alongside Jack Carlin and Ryan Owens, but the trio were comfortably beaten by all-conquering Holland, who set a new Olympic record of 41.369 seconds.
With the British riders struggling to hold one another’s wheels they finished three seconds down on the Dutch, who have not been beaten in a team sprint event since 2017.
Though he missed gold, Kenny still earned an eighth Olympic medal, moving him level with Sir Bradley Wiggins.
But the trio will be disappointed with their performance in the final. In the first round they had set a time of 41.829 and though that would still have been beaten by the Dutch, it was proof the final was nowhere near Britain’s best.
Kenny still has two more chances to add to his medal haul in these Games, due to compete in Friday’s individual sprint before Sunday’s keirin, but the challenge of beating the Dutch has clearly got no easier.
Kenny told the BBC: “We poured our heart into the second ride to get to the final and then just rolled the dice in the final.
“We geared up and just went for it, and obviously we knew we had a bit of ground to make up. I had nothing in the final, I was rubbish.”
Owens added: “It’s a dream come true. This team has got a pretty good track record and there’s a lot to live up to.
“It’s been a different few months but to come through it with these guys is amazing.
“We got our best out on the day, you have to show up in every race and there’s no pacing it in the team sprint.”