Olympics

Laura Kenny becomes first British woman to win gold at three Olympics

Laura Kenny has become the first British female Olympian to win gold at three consecutive Games after victory in the madison at the Izu Velodrome alongside Katie Archibald.

Kenny and Archibald produced a madison masterclass to win gold with 78 points ahead of Denmark in silver and the Russian Olympic Committee.

Later in the evening session, Jack Carlin won another medal for Great Britain, taking bronze in the men’s sprint.

The gold also means Kenny joins equestrian Charlotte Dujardin with a total of six Olympic medals to jointly lead the table of most medals won by a female British athlete. Gold in the madison adds to the four golds won across London 2012 and Rio 2016 and the silver Kenny won alongside the women’s pursuit team earlier this week. Five golds makes her the most successful female track cyclist in Olympic history.

Asked what it felt like to be become the first female British Olympian to win a gold medal at three successive Olympic Games, Kenny told the BBC: “It’s unbelievable. I am just so glad. I have never wanted to win a race so badly in my life. It was giving me fears like never before. But we went and did it.”

Kenny, invited to send a message to her son Albie back home in the UK, added: “I have never missed him so much in all my life. It’s so hard leaving him at home. To have Katie here – it feels like I am racing with my sister. I couldn’t have done it without her.”

Archibald added: “I’ve been dreaming about this. I’ve never wanted something so much and I’ve never been so nervous. But we’ve been clinical in our approach. I’d like to thank our coach Monica [Greenwood]. None of this would have happened without Monica. She overhauled our approach to this event.”