Gold medallist Marianne Vos of the Netherlands (C), silver medallist Elizabeth Armitstead of Britain (L) and bronze medallist Olga Zabelinskaya of Russia stand on the podium during the victory ceremony for the women's cycling road race (Reuters) - Reuters
Cycling > Olympic Games

Silver for Armitstead as Vos wins Olympic road race

Silver for Armitstead as Vos wins Olympic road race

By Eurosport
Last update 30/07/2012 at 13:03 - Published on 29/07/2012 at 22:28
By Eurosport - 30/07/2012 at 13:03

Lizzie Armitstead earned Britain their first medal of London 2012, but had to settle for silver after being out-sprinted by Marianne Vos in the Olympic women's cycling road race.

In conditions matching those of Beijing four years ago, where Armitstead’s team-mate Nicole Cooke took gold as rain poured, Armitstead finished narrowly behind Vos of Holland.

It came down to a straight fight between the two and Russia’s Olga Zabelinskaya, as they shot down The Mall, with a thunderstorm and standing water adding to the danger and Vos edging out Armistead.

Defending champion Cooke struggled to impact on the race after she dropped out of the back of the peloton with two-thirds of the race completed.

With less than five kilometres to go, Armitstead positioned herself on Vos’ wheel, as expectation increased when she entered the final kilometre.

But the Russian, who knew gold was beyond her and was doing all she could to secure a medal, attacked hard, with Armitstead lying in wait for a charge to the line.

In a thrilling sprint finish, Vos pipped Armitstead on the line, leaving her to claim silver, which she declared herself delighted with.

She said: “I’m a bit shocked. I was so glad I committed to that break, but I should have jumped early, but never mind.

“We discussed before what happened in the men’s race that once a group is committed in front, it’s hard to be in the back.

“It’s the most special thing I’ve experienced in my life. It’s crazy and so inspiring.”

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