Tokyo Olympics: Great Britain's Beth Shriever wins gold in women's BMX racing

July 30, 2021

Great Britain's Beth Shriever has won the gold medal in the women's BMX racing at the Tokyo Olympics.

Her victory came minutes after Team GB's Kye Whyte won silver in the men's competition.

Day 7 of the Games is shaping up to be a lucrative one. So far today, Team GB have won a gold medal, two silver medals, and two bronze medals.

Shriever led from the first bend, holding off a late charge from defending champion Mariana Pajon of Colombia down the final straight. Dutch rider Merel Smulders won the bronze medal.

Yesterday, 22-year-old Shriever was described as a "role model for girls" by her mother Kate, who said it was "really tough" not being in Tokyo to watch her compete.

Kate Shriever said her daughter's career had begun "on a second hand bike, with a helmet, elbow pads and knee pads" and "snowballed" from there.

She told the PA news agency: "It's been her dream since she was about nine years old since she started BMX and she always really enjoyed it."

Whyte, a 21-year-old Londoner, made it into the first corner of the men's final in second place and held his position as Niek Kimmann took gold for the Netherlands.

Colombian Carlos Ramirez Yepes took the bronze.

Whyte had shown in qualifying he had enough speed if only he could get off the line, but there were no mistakes in the final, as he quickly got himself into position.

There was drama earlier in the day when reigning champion Connor Fields had to be carried off on a stretcher after crashing in the third semi-final heat.

The 28-year-old American rider was fourth after his opening two heats but landed hard after a jump.

He lay on the track as medical personnel rushed to his side. They carried him away a few minutes later.

While he qualified for the final, he was not able to race.

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