LONDON (AFP) — China’s Guo Shuang and Sarah Lee Wai-Sze of Hong Kong led the Asian charge in the Olympic track cycling events Friday by taking silver and bronze respectively in the women’s keirin.
While Beijing Olympic sprint champion Pendleton soaked up the applause of a packed velodrome after winning the six-woman final, arguably the happiest rider on the podium was Lee. Her bronze medal feat handed Hong Kong their first Olympic medal in a cycling event, and only their fifth overall.
Hong Kong athletes had previously won one gold in windsurfing in 1996 and three Olympic silver medals in table tennis.
Lee had signaled her Olympic medal credentials when she beat Pendleton 2-1 in the Olympic test event to take a World Cup sprint bronze in the same velodrome in February.
And she could be in for more of the same when the women’s sprint competition begins on Sunday.
It has been an emotional 24 hours for Guo, who has not yet even started her preferred even, the individual sprint. Along with Chinese teammate Gong Jinjie, Guo took silver in the women’s inaugural team sprint on Thursday, after having won the gold only to be relegated to second for an infringement.
Guo was the only rider in the women’s inaugural keirin final to really test Pendleton, when she came racing back on the home straight to force a photo finish.