An entire country was psyched up last spring to get hold of tickets for the Olympics and be part of the Games. Many were rather disappointed as the demand was way higher than the amount of available tickets and the whole process left with a bitter taste in the mouth.
Earlier this year, there were two more rounds where one could snap up remaining tickets and I was lucky enough to put my hands on two tickets for the women’s mountain bike race. Having already been to an Olympics Games four years ago, in Beijing, I was very happy because I knew how special the race and the day would be.
And special it was. The whole experience was great, getting there and back was long but well-organised and flawless, the course was challenging but very spectator-friendly, the weather couldn’t have been better, a sunny day with a light breeze to prevent us from boiling and fierce racing by the ladies.[/wpcol_1half] [wpcol_1half_end id=”” class=”” style=””]
I was rooting both for Annie Last, the Team GB rider and Barbara Benko, the Hungarian rider – the latter suffered a mechanical in the first lap and was struggling onwards to finish the race. The day proved to me once again how tough cyclists are. Emily Batty suffered a broken collarbone but she decided to start the race and she soldiered on, crashed at some point and even though she was at the back of the pack, she finished the race nonetheless. Chapeau!
Given that I wasn’t an accredited photographer, moving around and finding good spots were much harder than normally and as spectators most of time weren’t allowed right next to the course, I relied on the 70-200 tele.
Without further ado, here are the photos, also worth checking out my friend’s, Tom Robertson’s gallery, who flew all the way from Montana just for the mountain biking events – that’s what I call dedication.[/wpcol_1half_end]