Host City: Antwerpen, Belgium
Venue(s): Garden City Velodrome, Wilrijk, Antwerpen
Date Started: August 9, 1920
Date Finished: August 10, 1920
The team pursuit quarter-finals were contested on 10 August, with the final two rounds held the next day. The event was marked by controversy. Great Britain won the first semi-final easily against Belgium. In the second semi-final, Italy was well ahead of South Africa with Â½-lap remaining. As South Africa crossed the finish mark at that point, the official starter fired the finishing pistol, and the South Africans slowed demonstrably. A protest was entered, but Italy had the race well in hand, and this would likely not have affected the result.
The pursuit final was contested between Great Britain and Italy. Britainâs [Albert White] fell off the pace of his team after four laps, but continued to ride. The Italian team caught up to him shortly thereafter. When they did, White pulled wide to allow them to pass. However, the Italians had already pulled wide to pass and they thought he was obstructing them. Two Italians went wide around him, while two went low, all four of them shouting at them as they passed. White dropped out on the next lap. A French rider, [Henri Habent], ran over to him and punched him in the chest. Britain went on to win by 4/10ths of a second. The Italians naturally protested. The protest jury consisted of J. Blair of Great Britain, an Italian and a Frenchman. Blair and the Italian withdrew because of the conflict of interest and the French judge ruled in favor of the Italians.