Event Report – Olympic Road Race – Women's 10th August 2008 – Beijing, China Report: Eddie Allen Images: Phil O'Connor
She stayed out of trouble for the first part of the race, she read every move intelligently, she got into the decisive final break and overcame a mistake on the final bend to clinch gold in a thrilling sprint at Badaling. It was a huge team effort for the GB team, played to perfection, with Pooley causing untold damage on the first climb of the Badaling Pass and Laws doing huge amounts of work in the opening stages. At the end it was between five riders in the final kilometre, and it looked as if Cooke was out of it after she lost ground on one of the final corners. Suddenly, Cooke had a mountain to overcome and kicked early, giving it everything to overcome the remaining four competitors in an inspiring and gritty final sprint in miserable conditions on the mountain.
Emma says: What a start for GBR cycling! Well done Nicole Cooke who without the huge effort from Emma Pooley that gold may not have been hers for the taking.