SCOOP Olympic Update, Monday, 18 September, 2000
SCOOP Olympic Update, Monday 18 September, 2000
Article: Mathew Loh
IN A HUGE disappointment for herself and New Zealand Sarah Ulmer has been beaten for a bronze medal in the women's 3km individual pursuit by 39-year-old British veteran Yvonne McGregor.
Despite leading throughout the 3000 metre race - at one stage by 1.7 seconds - Ulmer failed to finish the business and with her wily British opponent timing her charge to perfection she lost the chance to earn a bronze medal by a mere 0.80 seconds.
At 24-years-old Ulmer gave 13 years to McGregor but unfortunately youthful vigour failed to beat determined experience and although appearing to be in control of the race Ulmer's pace pettered out and she had to settle for fourth place and New Zealanders' were denied the opportunity to celebrate the nations first medal.
Meanwhile it was a huge upset and massive disappointment at the Sydney aquatic centre for host nation Australia when Sunday's golden boy Ian Thorpe could only win silver in a 200 metre mens freestyle race won in a world record 1.m 45.35 secs by big Dutchman Peter van den Hoogenband.
The race was dominated by van den Hoogenband and by equaling his world record setting swim in the semis he forced Thorpe to settle for silver while Australian-based Italian Massimo Rosolino maintained his good form to take bronze.
Despite being beaten in world record time it was obviously disappointing to Thorpe and certainly deflating for his manic hometown fans but "Thorpedo" showed his class goes further than the pool when he showed dignity in losing by congatulating his conquerer with genuine humility.
Van den Hoogenband swam brilliantly and by joining teamate Inge de Bruijn as a world-record setting Olympic gold medalist proved the Dutch swim programme is on top of the world.