Britain’s men’s team sprint trio smashed their own world record to beat France to gold on an incredible evening at the London Velodrome.
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Philip Hindes, Jason Kenny and Sir Chris Hoy clocked 42.600 seconds, beating the mark they set in the previous round.
The victory gave Hoy the fifth Olympic gold of his remarkable career.
His golds and one silver put him level with Sir Steve Redgrave in the all-time British Olympic gold medal rankings.
Hoy’s haul comes from four different events and four different Games.
“It’s quite overwhelming. We knew it was possible, but it doesn’t come out of the blue,” said the Scot.
“It was an immensely proud moment to do it in front of a home crowd. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity. We enjoyed it and we gave it our all.
“I dug deeper than ever before, I didn’t want to let the boys down.”
The 36-year-old will dominate the headlines, but the contribution of 19-year-old Hindes, who was born in Germany, was highlighted by Olympic cycling champion and BBC Sport summariser Chris Boardman.
“What an exciting final, and for me it was all about young Philip Hindes,” he said. “He had to do the ride of his life there, and all three of them are in the form of their lives.
“All the team can be rightly proud of themselves, a fantastic job all round.”
Hindes, who competed for Germany as a junior, switched allegiances in 2010 and was soon drafted into the GB team sprint squad.
Britain had been struggling in the event ever since Jamie Staff retired.
He had performed the all-important lead-off role, accelerating away from a standing start and riding at the front of the three-man train for the first lap.
But Hindes has filled that gap, although his first big championship did not go to plan. His mistake resulted in Britain being disqualified at April’s World Championships. Australia were the winners then, beating the French into second place.
It seemed as if disaster might have struck Hindes again in the qualifying round, as he slid down the track in GB’s first race against Germany.
But it was ruled as a mechanical failure, Hindes picking himself up to help his more experienced team-mates to an Olympic record.
They then beat Japan in the semi-finals to take another world record, before capping off a night of scarcely believable drama with a second world record time.
Earlier on in the evening, the packed velodrome had been hugely disappointed to see GB women’s sprint team disqualified after they had initially gone through to the gold-medal contest with China. That left Victoria Pendleton and Jess Varnish visibly upset.
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