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Olympic Games, Beijing, 2008



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3km individual pursuit


British talent Rebecca Romero secured her second Olympic medal but first medal on the track. The first was won in rowing in Athens

Rebecca Romero (Great Britain) never looked troubled during her rider for Gold, against compatriot Wendy Houvenaghel. Romero was fastest through the first 2000m and despite a huge effort from Houvenaghel in the last 1000m she could not match the speed of Romero.  

In the race for Bronze, Lesya Kalitovska (Ukraine) beat Alison Shanks (New Zealand) by over 3 seconds. Kalitovska  was fastest over the first 1000m  but lost time over the second to Shanks. Shanks could not gain any ground though as Kalitovska gained ground again over the last 1000m to win Bronze.

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Results - Final

Name Country 1000m 1000-2000 2000m 2000 -3000 Time km/h
Gold Rebecca Romero Great Britain 1:11.919(1) 1:07.615(1) 2:19.534(1) 1:08.787(2) 03:28.321 51.843
Silver Wendy Houvenaghel Great Britain 1:13.032(2) 1:09.013(2) 2:22.045(2) 1:08.350(1) 03:30.395 51.332
Bronze Lesya Kalitovska Ukraine 1:11.964(1) 1:09.192(2) 2:21.156(1) 1:10.257(1) 03:31.413 51.084
Alison Shanks New Zealand 1:13.827(2) 1:08.437(1) 2:22.264(2) 1:11.892(2) 03:34.156 50.43

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Round 1

The gold medal will go to a British rider as Wendy Houvenaghel and Rebecca Romero qualified fastest. Lesya Kalitovska (Ukraine) was never looked troubled to secure her spot in the ride for bronze against Alison Shanks of New Zealand.

The qualifying round saw the two British riders Wendy Houvenaghel and Rebecca Romero show just in inkling of the form that they have come to the Olympics in. Both riders were the only ones to go under 3 minutes 30 seconds in the qualifying round. 

Eight riders went through from the qualifying round and tensions were high as they prepared to ride. First to ride were the New Zealander Alison Shanks and Sarah Hammer the America. 

Lesya Kalitovska (Ukraine) was up against Vilija Sereikaite of Lithuania. The Ukrainian never looked troubled to secure her spot in the ride for bronze.  

Romero, the 2008 World Champion, rode off against Katie Mactier (Australia). Mactier was fastest over the first 750m but Romero quickly caught and passed Mactier with 200m to go. 

Fastest qualifier, Houvenaghel, riding in her first Olympics was up against Lada Kozlikova from the Czech Republic who qualified in the slowest time of the eight.  Houvenaghel caught the Czech rider with two laps to go.

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Results - Round 1

Start Name Country 1000m 1000-2000 2000m 2000 -3000 Time km/h
1 Alison Shanks New Zealand 1:13.263(2) 1:08.166(1) 2:21.429(1) 1:11.049(1) 03:32.478 50.828
2 Sarah Hammer United States 1:13.139(1) 1:08.166(1) 2:21.747(2) 1:12.490(2) 03:34.237 50.411
1 Lesya Kalitovska Ukraine 1:12.584(1) 1:08.593(1) 2:21.177(1) 1:10.608(1) 03:31.785 50.995
2 Vilija Sereikaite Lithuania 1:12.925(2) 1:11.317(2) 2:24.242(2) 1:12.566(2) 03:36.808 49.813
1 Rebecca Romero Great Britain 1:11.738(1) 1:07.686(1) 2:23.336(2) 1:08.279(1) 03:27.703 51.997
2 Katie Mactier Australia 1:12.929(2) 1:10.407(2) 2:23.336(2) 1:13.960(2) 3:37.296    Caught
1 Wendy Houvenaghel Great Britain 1:12.000(1) 1:08.021(1) 2:20.021(1) 1:07.808(1) 03:27.829
2 Lada Kozlikova Czech Republic 1:14.085(2) 1:12.439(2) 2:26.524(2) DNF DNF

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Britain's Wendy Houvenaghel set the quickest time in the individual pursuit with a time of 3 minutes 28.443 seconds. This time was a lifetime best time for Houvenaghel who only took up pursuiting in late 2005. Team mate Rebecca Romero, a rowing silver medalist for GB at the Athens 2004 Games, was second quickest in 3:28.641. The two Brits were the only riders to duck under 3 minutes 30 seconds. Third fastest was Lesya Kalitovska the Ukrainian power house in 3 minutes 31.9 seconds.  

Lada Kozlikova, the Czech rider, started the competition but did not really make any impression early on. She did, however manage to scrape into 8th position overall and secured a place in the next round.

Starting in the third group, Karin Thürig was probably the most surprising of the riders not to go through. The pursuit has been one of her target events over the last few year but her time trial bronze medal from earlier in the week had obviously taken a toll on her. Thürig was 12th fastest after the first 1000m and managed to pull some back over the subsequent laps and finished just out side the qualifying group in 9th place.

Alison Shanks, the New Zealander, rode off against Kalitovska and covered the second 1000m in a second best time. She lost a little time over the remaining laps but managed to quality 4th fastest.

Sarah Hammer, the American former World Champion, has struggled over the last 12 months with a lower back injury and has worked really hard to get to form in time for the Olympics. She could only manage 5th fastest however but it was enough to go into the next round.  

Houvenaghel set a steady pace over the first 1000m and gradually increased her speed to qualify in the fastest time.  

Australian Katie Mactier was up last against Romero. Mactier set a blistering first 1000m but could not maintain her speed and ended up in 7th fastest time.

The top eight riders go through to the next round, of which the top 4 will compete for the medals.

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Results - Qualifying

Position Name Country 1000m 1000-2000 2000m 2000 -3000 Time km/h
1 Wendy Houvenaghel Great Britain 1:11.842(4) 1:08.652(3) 2:20.494(3) 1:07.949(1) 03:28.4 51.812
2 Rebecca Romero Great Britain 1:11.927(5) 1:07.683(1) 2:19.610(1) 1:09.031(2) 03:28.6 51.763
3 Lesya Kalitovska Ukraine 1:11.544(2) 1:08.910(4) 2:20.454(2) 1:11.488(3) 03:31.9 50.957
4 Alison Shanks New Zealand 1:13.624(8) 1:08.632(2) 2:22.256(6) 1:12.056(4) 03:34.3 50.393
5 Sarah Hammer United States 1:11.654(3) 1:09.846(5) 2:21.500(4) 1:13.971(8) 03:35.5 50.122
6 Vilija Sereikaite Lithuania 1:12.685(6) 1:11.043(6) 2:23.728(7) 1:12.335(5) 03:36.1 49.985
7 Katie Mactier Australia 1:10.594(1) 1:11.372(7) 2:21.966(5) 1:16.212(11) 03:38.2 49.5
8 Lada Kozlikova Czech Republic 1:14.265(9) 1:11.412(8) 2:25.677(8) 1:13.884(7) 03:39.6 49.189
9 Karin Thurig Switzerland 1:16.058(12) 1:11.880(10) 2:27.938(10) 1:12.924(6) 03:40.9 48.899
10 Marie Luisa Calle Colombia 1:14.419(10) 1:11.419(9) 2:25.838(9) 1:15.337(9) 03:41.2 48.83
11 Verena Joose Germany 1:15.748(11) 1:13.132(11) 2:28.880(12) 1:15.600(10) 03:44.5 48.111
12 Svetlana Pauliukaite Lithuania 1:13.585(7) 1:14.508(12) 2:28.093(11) 1:17.598(12) 03:45.7 47.853
13 Evelyn Garcia El Salvador 1:17.464(13) 1:18.237(13) 2:35.701(13) 1:21.148(13) 03:56.8 45.598

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