Thwaites joyful but not quite triumphant

England's Scott Thwaites with his bronze medal

England's Scott Thwaites with his bronze medal

First published in Sport
Last updated

BURLEY-in-Wharfedale's Scott Thwaites had mixed feelings after winning bronze in the men's road race.

The 24-year-old, who was riding in his first major games, was beaten to the silver medal in a sprint finish by Jack Bauer of New Zealand.

Welshman Geraint Thomas won gold by one minute 21 seconds after breaking free of the three-man lead group on St Vincent Street with 11.5km to go.

"I wanted to catch them by surprise," said Thomas. "Those two are fast guys and I don't have any acceleration, I'm just a massive diesel engine.

"I needed to go early. Luckily I had the legs to take it all the way to the line."

Thwaites said: "I was happy I was guaranteed a podium, as long as I stayed upright. It's a shame I ended up with bronze, but I'm happy with that.

"Geraint was so strong. He was unbelievable."

Thomas was told by Welsh coach Darren Tudur before the start of the 12-lap, 168-kilometres undulating course that he would be Wales' flagbearer for the closing ceremony.

And the bronze medallist from Thursday's road time-trial ensured he would lead the team after becoming their fifth gold medallist, a week after finishing the Tour de France in Paris for Team Sky.

The 28-year-old from Cardiff said: "Riding the Tour before it just adds to how good it feels to come away with two medals. I really didn't expect it.

"I was coming purely out of national pride and wanting to ride for Wales. I never really expected to medal, if I'm honest.

"To come away with a win and a bronze is more than I could've dreamt of.

"It was an amazing feeling to come down the home straight with this Welsh jersey on and win."

There was plenty of drama in the torrential rain as Thomas had to overcome an early mechanical and a puncture inside the final 6km.

Fortunately for Thomas he had enough of an advantage to absorb the inconvenience to win.

Thomas, twice an Olympic champion in the team pursuit on the track, said: "When I felt that front wheel going down, I can't say what I was saying, I was swearing, saying 'what have I got to do?'

"It felt like an eternity for that wheel change. I'm sure it wasn't that slow.

"Fortunately I had a decent enough time gap."

Just 12 of the 139 starters completed the race, with David Millar of Scotland 11th.

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