Main menu


Australia's Grace Brown and Rohan Dennis Complete Commonwealth Cycling Clean Sweep | Commonwealth Games 2022

featured image

As Grace Brown prepared for the first leg of Australia’s sweep of the Commonwealth Games individual time trial, the challenges ahead were in sharp focus. British rider Hayley Simmons, who won bronze on the Gold Coast four years ago and now works as a commentator during her injury, perfectly described the event’s demands.

“It’s called the Race of Truth,” Simmons told the BBC. “At the end of the day, the pain in your leg and the only thing you think about in your head is you. You can’t hide behind your teammate.

By mid-afternoon on Thursday at the complex course in Wolverhampton’s Black Country, the evidence was clear. Brown was by far the strongest woman. And Rohan Dennis, his two-time world champion in this discipline, finally became the Commonwealth’s champion with his time of 46:21.20, where early strength and speed mattered.

In both races the British rider finished second. But it’s been generous for silver medalists Anna Henderson and Fred Wright. In reality, there was daylight behind the Australian champion. Both gold medalists had plenty of time to consider their thoughts in the second half of the time trial.

Brown coasted out by more than 33 seconds while Dennis fell behind when he took victory in a field that included 2018 Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas by just over 26 seconds. .

The Australian netballers suffered a shock defeat to Jamaica on Day 7 of the Birmingham Games, but Brown and Dennis rode well and justified their goodwill. At the Tokyo Olympics, where he finished fourth, watching Brown draw rival after rival on the track was like watching Pac-Man mow down ghosts in his old-school arcade game. The 30-year-old chewed them up and charged in pursuit of his next target, his 28.8 km course winding, hilly and tactically complex where he led to victory in 40:05.20.

“The team didn’t tell me I was ahead until the last five kilometers, so I thought any news was not good news,” she said.

Rohan Dennis zipping around the West Park course in Wolverhampton. Photo: David Davies/PA

Brown started cycling later than the others. Growing up in the Victorian town of Camperdown, the gateway to the Otway Mountains and the Great Ocean Her Road, she headed off to boarding school in a big smoke as a teenager.

In Melbourne she was a good athlete. Her long distance she went. She was fast enough to compete at the national level, but her body wasn’t designed for the rigors of long-distance running.

But her discipline in training, combined with the independence she gained from leaving home early, served Brown well when she jumped on the bike in her early twenties. and pro-level wins began to flow. With the rider now Australian, Brown was the clear choice to win here.

Well before she crossed the line it was clear that the pre-race favorite was running very well. “I had a target on my back. I didn’t take too much pressure to be the favorite, I just kept calm and focused on what I had to do,” she said.

Dennis won a silver medal at the 2014 Glasgow event. This year, he won the World Championship for the second time in a row, starting with his 1st in the team his time his trials. He added individual successes to his illustrious career with successes in 2018 and his 2019 at Innsbruck and Yorkshire. Last year he won a bronze medal in Tokyo. But he wanted to stand alone on the podium with a gold medal in a major competition.

“Finally, I took the top step. [me] 12 years from Delhi. “The Olympics was my first individual medal at the Olympics, so it’s hard to beat.” “But being on the top tier of that is a different feeling. It’s a little hard to compare. It’s special either way.”

Madison de Rosario won gold in the women's T53/54 1500m final on Day 7.
Madison de Rosario won gold in the women’s T53/54 1500m final on Day 7. Photo: Luke Walker/Getty Images

At Alexander Stadium, para wheelchair star Madison de Rosario added to her thrilling racing success in last week’s marathon with the T54 1500m to win her second gold medal.

The 28-year-old, who won the Gold Coast double four years ago, beat compatriot Angie Ballard in a tactical race to become the first Australian para-athlete to win four gold medals at the Commonwealth Games. .

Australia’s world champion Eleanor Patterson and compatriot Nicola Orislagers cleared 1.81 m on their first jump to qualify for Saturday’s final. Oliver Hoare was also the fastest qualifier in the morning session with a time of 3:37.57 in the men’s 1500m final.

However, there was a disappointment for Stewart McSwain who failed to start after falling ill with the flu. His fellow Australians Kathryn Mitchell and Ash Moloney were also forced out due to illness, while Kelsey Lee Barber was cleared to compete after recovering from Covid-19. I was.

Matt Denny scored a commanding victory in the men’s discussion after setting two personal bests at 67.26m on the night’s final effort, while Sara Edminston won silver in the women’s F44 discus, 2017 Since then, it has continued to run strongly at international events.

Elsewhere, Chinese-born diver Shixin Li won silver with a spectacular performance in the 1m springboard behind England’s Commonwealth Games flag bearer Jack Laugher. The 34-year-old posted his overall score of 437.05 points, 10 points ahead of his three gold medalists in the Commonwealth Games.

The Rhythmic Gymnastics team of Lydia Iakobreva, Alexandra Kieroy Bogatyleva and Ashari Jesse Gill won silver behind gold medal winners Canada, while England finished third.