Road star Storey wins third gold of Games

Sarah Storey won her third gold medal at London 2012, and the 10th of her two-sport Paralympic career, with victory in the C5 Time Trial on the first morning of Road Cycling at Brands Hatch.

And Welsh cyclist Mark Colbourne took his third medal of the Games, adding C1 Time Trial silver to the gold and silver he took on the track.

Mancunian Storey has now won five Cycling and five Swimming golds in a 20-year career. She competes in the Road Race on Thursday, aiming to level Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson’s haul of 11 career golds.

She beat her nearest rival, Poland’s Anna Harkowska, by a massive 94-second margin with a time of 22:40.66 and average speed of 42.3kph over the 16km course, two laps of a circuit including much of the famous motor racing venue and surrounding hills.

Storey was delighted to add to Great Britain’s catalogue of Road Racing victories this summer, including Bradley Wiggins’ triumph in the Olympic Time Trial a month ago.

“I’ve spent so much time on the road this year and only went onto the track three weeks ago,” she said.

“Having watched the success of the Olympic team on the road, Bradley winning the Time Trial and Chris Froome getting the bronze medal, I just wanted to make sure I added my name to that list of success.

“With the track I’ve done so much [but] I love riding on the road and when the Time Trial’s done well there’s no greater feeling.

Storey, 34, was joined on the podium by her husband, gold medal winning track tandem pilot Barney, to celebrate her latest victory.

“He’s worked so hard with me all summer – and in the last four years since Beijing – to make my position better, make my power better,” she said. “The power was there today.”

Chelmsford rider Crystal Lane, who was inspired to go to London 2012 after seeing Storey in action in Beijing, finished in ninth place, 4’52 behind her heroine.

Colbourne was pleased to be just 12.94 seconds behind the winner of his event, German Michael Teuber, in another two-lap event. He already had silver from the C1-2-3 1km Time Trial on the track and gold from the C1 Pursuit.

“I’m proud of what I’ve done; I’m catching Teuber month by month,” he said. “I tried to pace it as best I could. I was probably 30 seconds quicker on the first lap than I wanted.”

Of Storey he said: “She’s a pure professional. It’s an amazing achievement and certainly an inspiration.”

Jon-Allan Butterworth, winner of three silver medals on the track, finished 13th in the C5 event, wearing heavy bandaging on his right side after a training crash on the day before the event.

He finished the 24km course in 36’56.39, a margin of 4’43 behind winner Yegor Dementyev of Ukraine and said: “I definitely wouldn’t have won but [the crash] definitely had an impact on my performance.”

Butterworth hurt his ankle, knee, hip, back, shoulder, arm and had quite deep cuts on his right elbow.

He explained: “Going down one of the descents I was on the racing line, I got taken out by a tandem.

“I went down pretty heavily, at about 50kph something like that. I didn’t know if I was going to ride today. It’s been quite sore resting on my wounds on the TT bike.”

Londoner Shaun McKeown was sixth in the C3 Time Trial, having won Pursuit silver medallist on the track last Friday, and pledged to battle for a Road Race medal on Thursday, when he competes alongside Colbourne.

“It was a really tough course, windy too. The circuit was hard work and I gave it everything in the tank,” he said.

On the Road Race he added: “It will be a different philosophy. It would be great to get a breakaway going and I’ll ride it aggressively.”

For more news and pictures from London 2012 go to the ParalympicsGB website: www.paralympics.org.uk/gb

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