Cycling’s golden girl Laura Trott returned to the Lee Valley Velodrome to win for Great Britain at the Track Cycling World Championships – but Sir Bradley Wiggins and his team-mates had to settle for second place in the team pursuit event.

Trott, 23, has now claimed six world titles. She said: “When I was in the race I wasn’t feeling that good. But it worked out perfectly for me. I’m so happy. I let everybody get on with it and raced my own race.”

The cream of world cycling has converged on the Olympic Park showpiece for the Track Cycling World Championships with many hoping their performances will secure a trip to Rio 2016.

Trott, who came to fame in the London Olympics in 2012, won the scratch race to notch up Team GB’s first gold of the event which runs until Sunday (March 6). While team-mate Becky James could only manage bronze in the keirin race, it was triumph for the former double world champion.

She has suffered two years of injury problems and a cancer scare before the event on Thursday. Her podium finish should means she can begin to clear her summer schedules.

Sir Bradley and his pursuit team appeared like a shoo-in for a team pursuit goal but they were dramatically pipped by the Australians. It was just a bad day at the office according to the cycling hero saying he would “put my house” on GB claiming the Olympic title in Rio this August.

Trott was unable to help her team-mates go better than third in the team pursuit. Along with Elinor Barker, Ciara Horne and Joanna Rowsell Shand, she clocked the fifth-fastest time in qualifying in an event where Team GB is used to domination.

Despite the psychological blow of losing in the team pursuit, Sir Bradley was pleased to see the return of powerhouse Ed Clancy. A few months ago he underwent back surgery and could barely walk.

Wiggins said: “Look at our efforts individually from Christmas to where we are now. We’ve come on leaps and bounds and I think we’ll move on again for Rio. We’ve got a lot of work to do. It’s going to be hotter than ever at the Olympics, as it always is between GB and Australia.”