Mark Colbourne smashed the world record and guaranteed at least a second silver medal of the London 2012 Paralympics, qualifying for the C1 3km Pursuit final at the Velodrome on Friday.

Londoner Shaun McKeown also secured a track medal and will compete in the final of the C3 event in the afternoon session, while defending champion Darren Kenny competes for bronze.

Welshman Colbourne, who won 1km Time Trial silver on Thursday, became the first athlete in his category – for riders with the most serious disabilities – to break the four-minute mark and he did it emphatically with a time of three minutes 53.970 seconds.

He also improved by seven seconds on the time he set to win February’s World Championships, catching world bronze medallist Rodrigo Lopez in the process, to the delight of the crowd. But he was unsurprised with the achievement, saying:

“The schedule we had was just under four minutes and I think the crowd certainly helped me on.

“Yesterday I was very proud to be the first medallist for ParalympicsGB. However, this event is certainly more my bag really, so I’m looking forward to the final later on.”

At 15:28 this afternoon, Colbourne will race Li Zhang Yu, the Chinese rider who beat him in Thursday’s 1km final, and whose own world record stood for just 10 minutes in qualifying.

McKeown, 22, will face American Joseph Berenyi, who broke Kenny’s previous world record in qualifying fastest in the C3 event. They race for gold at 16:22 this afternoon. Kenny himself was fourth fastest and faces world champion David Nicholas of Australia in the race for third overall.

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