Men’s Cyclists Win Team GB’s Fifth Gold
Updated: 9:20pm UK, Thursday 02 August 2012
Sir Chris Hoy, Jason Kenny and Philip Hindes have won gold in the men’s team sprint – Team GB’s fifth of the London Olympics.
The British trio set a world record – their second of the night – to beat France during a repeat of the final four years ago in Beijing.
It came after Team GB won two gold medals in canoeing and shooting events on day six of the Games.
Hoy, Kenny and Hindes completed their three-lap effort in a world best time of 42.600 seconds, beating the record of 42.747 seconds they had set earlier in qualifying.
Hindes, who replaced the retired Jamie Staff from the crew that won gold in the 2008 Games, gave the team the lead after the first lap, and Kenny and Hoy added to it.
The win took Hoy’s personal Olympic gold medal tally to five – equalling the number won by former rower Sir Steve Redgrave.
An emotional Hoy wiped a tear from his eye on the top step of the podium as the national anthem finished playing.
Earlier, Victoria Pendleton and Jess Varnish were relegated in the women’s team sprint and did not contest a medal ride.
The British pair had received a huge home crowd cheer when they set a world record during qualifying. The record did not last long however, as the Chinese team set an even faster time just moments later.
China went on to win silver after they were relegated in the final, handing the win to the German team.
It was after the subsequent first round when the British women were disqualified for an illegal change. Pendleton is set to resume competition in the keirin on Friday, but for Varnish the London Games are over.
The successful day also saw Britain claim a silver in the same canoeing competition – the two-man slalom at Lee Valley White Water Centre.
Etienne Stott and Tim Baillie were first, while David Florence and Richard Hounslow were runners-up.
Three-time defending champions, Slovakian twins Pavel and Peter Hochschorner, who were trying to win their fourth straight gold in the event, had to settle for bronze.
Peter Wilson, from Dorchester, triumphed in the men’s double trap by two shots at the Royal Artillery Barracks.
The 25-year-old, who holds the world record, scored 188 points, beating Hakan Dahlby of Sweden, who claimed silver with 186 points.
At the end of day six, Britain have five golds, six silvers and four bronzes.
The women’s pair of Helen Glover and Heather Stanning secured victory in the rowing, and cyclist Bradley Wiggins won the time trial on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Team GB’s Gemma Gibbons claimed silver in the women’s under-78kg judo after she was beaten by American Kayla Harrison in the final.
Gibbons, 25, who only stepped up a weight division this year, had stunned world champion Audrey Tcheumeo of France in the semis at the ExCeL arena.
The bout went into sudden death and the Briton produced an ippon to claim a place in the last two.
Prime Minister David Cameron narrowly missed seeing her victory after talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin over-ran. The two leaders visited the arena after the discussions at Downing Street.
Earlier, Britain won a silver in the rowing after the lightweight men’s four came second in a close race won by South Africa at Eton Dorney.
Brothers Richard and Peter Chambers, Rob Williams and Chris Bartley claimed the first rowing silver of the 2012 Games for Britain.
Denmark were leading from the start before the British four started to press them. But they had no answer to South Africa’s finishing surge.
In the pool, Rebecca Adlington, who has already picked up a bronze in the 400 metres freestyle, qualified fastest for the 800 metres final which takes place on Friday.
Tennis star Andy Murray progressed through to the semi-finals after winning his quarter-final against Spain’s Nicolas Almagro 6-4 6-1.
During the evening’s events at the velodrome, Varnish was too upset to speak to the media, but a tearful Pendleton accepted the officials’ decision, admitting she knew she was in the wrong.
“It was an illegal change. I came through in the change zone about a metre too early; we’re talking about one hundredth of a second of a mistake there.
“Jess moved up a fraction too early and I just saw the door and went for it, because that’s my cue to try to squeeze underneath her as quickly as possible.
“It’s one of those things that happens. It’s quicker than a blink of an eye. You have to stick by the rules. The rules are there to make it a fair sport.
“Unfortunately we fell on the wrong side of that today. It wasn’t intentional, obviously.”
Wiggins secured his position as an all-time British sporting great on Wednesday when he claimed a seventh Olympic medal, and revealed he was partying late into the night to celebrate.
He later posted photos of himself on Twitter enjoying drinks near St Paul’s Cathedral, saying: “Well what a day, blind drunk at the minute and overwhelmed with all the messages. Thank you everyone it’s been emotional X.”
The 32-year-old clinched gold just 10 days after an historic victory in the Tour de France.
After his gold medal ride, a fan stole his cycling shorts while he showered.
“It’s only a bit of cycling kit. But you don’t expect pilferers to do that in a five-star spa. Sweaty cycling kit is probably on eBay tonight,” he said.
Wiggins’ seventh medal takes him one clear of rower Sir Steve Redgrave, making him the most decorated British Olympian of all time.
His delight at the conclusion of the 44km time-trial was shared by thousands of Union flag-wielding supporters. He said: “It’s really incredible to win an Olympic gold in your home city.
“When you win in the velodrome there are three or four thousand people cheering. Here, around the streets of London, the noise is just amazing. I don’t think anything will top that. It’s just been phenomenal.”
Wiggins’ success has led British cycling chief Dave Brailsford to lead calls for him to be knighted.
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Article source: http://news.sky.com/story/968297