Commonwealth Games 2006
Melbourne - Track Competition
Day 1 - 500m TT
wins first cycling gold of the Games for Australia in the 500m TT
Meares (AUS) rode a gold medal winning ride in 34.326 setting a new
Commonwealth Games record, ahead of Victoria Pendleton (ENG) and Kerrie
Meares standing as a World and Olympic Champion, World Record holder and now
Commonwealth Games Gold medalist and games record holder Anna Meares said
was inspired to win by the attendance of my parents at the event”.
Meares flashed to victory in the women's 500m time trial, showing all the
class of a champion.
This is Anna’s first gold medal at a Commonwealth Games, after winning bronze in the Sprint and fourth place in the time trial at Manchester in 2002. Both Meares sisters soaked up the support of their overjoyed parents, watching them race for the first time at a major meeting. The elder of the two, and room-mate sister Kerrie making it a near-perfect family affair by taking the bronze medal.
her win Anna chatted to the eager reporters; "We had the most important people
in our lives cheering us on, and that's what made it such a sweet
victory," said Meares, who broke her big sister's Games
record in the process. "Man, I'm so, so happy with that."
triumph was a testament to the fighting spirit of Meares, whose doctors told
her as recently as seven months ago that a back injury would prevent her
from racing in Melbourne.
ride was tough and was a repeat of what she had experienced in Athens; beat
a record breaking time to take Gold. Racing last, Anna had to beat England's
Victoria Pendleton's new Commonwealth Games record of 34:662 that she set in
her ride to clinch the gold.
realisation that she had taken Gold and the record, showed on her face as
she looked up at the scroreboard, had tears began running down her
Celebrating her win she waved and gave high fives to her family in the cheering crowd. Once she was off the bike, the sisters gave each other hugs and kisses before speaking with reporters.
told she was the first Australian to pick up gold, Anna Meares was
I? Oh awesome. No, I didn't know that. Oh wow. I'll just stand here with my
mouth open and Kerrie can tell you how I feel."
how she felt when Pendleton clocked a new Commonwealth record just before
her ride, Anna Meares responded: "I
can't really repeat what I thought. “Oh gosh' might be a nice way of
putting it. I
saw 34:6 come up on the board and (I was) straight back looking at the
ground thinking you're here, you do your own race, don't worry about the
really helped me perform under pressure of these types of situations. This
is my second fastest time ever”
she heard the roar of the crowd after the race, Anna Meares knew she had won
but didn't realise her time was so quick. "I
knew because the crowd was going pretty wild I'd won and didn't really see
the time until I got over the back straight and my mum and dad were leaning
so far over the fence and that was when I caught a glimpse of 34:3 and I was
so, so happy with that. I
feel bad to take the record from her sister but she feel really good as
well. I knew it was going to be sensational in the home games. This crowd,
have made me so proud and the noise was amazing”
was really please with her performance “I
am normally really nervous, tonight is the first time in four years that I
have been fully in control of my emotions and my mental preparation. Just
knowing that my friends and family were here to support me was great”
at the press conference after the event both sisters were relaxed and
pleased with there respective performances. Kerrie was quick to recognised
her performance “That’s
the fastest I have riden in 4 years”. Asked how Kerrie had help
with Anna’s recent back injury given that she (Kerrie) has had a long
struggle with her back injury Anna added “seeing
what Kerrie went through really helped me, along with the physio”.
Asked about the rest of the women’s teams readiness to face the challenges
of the games after the challenge of the last 12 months, they both added “It’s
great, Alexis Rhodes is rooming next to us and the other female riders
are there too. When we see what Alexis has done to be at these games it’s
amazing”. Anna added “
I shouldn’t really complain about my back when you see what Alexis when
through” Kerrie chipped in “ Yes,
a bulging disk is tough in our sport but Alexis has come back after breaking
32 bones, she’s inspiring”
how they will celebrate the sisters added “with
a hot chocolate, ice cream and a massage back at the athletes village later
Victoria Pendleton chatted after her ride. “I went faster than I thought I would go, the first quarter was quick than I had been going in training. I take the positives from every experience, the sprint is my focus for this event and the Worlds”. Asked how difficult is it to come out of the Worlds as champion in one event to do a best performance in a 500. “It was tough to come up against Anna. This is the closest I have been to Anna in times so it looks good for the sprint on Saturday”.
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