May 19 2013 Latest news:
Lee Power, Olympic Reporter, at the Velodrome
Saturday, August 4, 2012
Olympic title and world record for Londoner
Sutton’s Joanna Rowsell wrote her name into the history books as Great Britain’s women won the Olympic cycling team pursuit title at the Velodrome this evening.
Rowsell, 23, combined with Dani King and Laura Trott in a stunning world-record display to leave the United States shellshocked.
The British trio had broken their own world record, set while winning World Championship gold earlier this year, during the qualifying round yesterday when clocking three minutes 15.669secs.
And they lowered it again by almost a full second to 3:14.682 this afternoon when racing against Canada to earn a place in the gold medal showdown.
Rowsell led the team off from the start and had opened up a 0.2secs lead by the end of the first lap.
The gap grew and grew with each circuit of the Velodrome, with the Americans unable to keep pace with the all-conquering Brits.
Pushing all the way to the finish, the GB trio shaved more than half a second off their world record once again to win in 3:14.051.
Rowsell, who was spotted by a talent coach when riding at school after becoming interested in cycling after the Athens Olympics, won a national junior individual pursuit title at her very first attempt.
She was representing Sutton in the London Youth Games only eight years ago, but is a three-time world champion and now an Olympic gold medalist.
She said: “The last couple of laps we could just about see them, but we had to keep pushing to the finish.
“I knew we could do it. Getting the world record is a bonus but it’s all about this gold medal.
“The crowd were absolutely fantastic and they really pushed us on through the last kilometre.”
The 20-year-old Trott, who comes from Cheshunt, added: “It’s just mad! I feel very emotional because this has been my dream since I was eight and we’ve only gone and done it!”