PHOTO GALLERY: Olympic road cycling in Richmond Park
Britain’s love affair with cycling was in full evidence on the opening day of London 2012 – even if Mark Cavendish was sadly disappointed. Up to a million people in Richmond, Kingston and Surrey lined the route of the Men’s Road Race on July 28. Photographer Jack Lawson was there at the Richmond Park leg of the route
1. The cyclists travelled through Richmond Park twice during the day, at around 10am and 3pm. Between those times the cyclists completed the Surrey leg of the route, including a crunching eight laps of Box Hill in Dorking.
2. Richmond came out in force to cheer for Team GB – Mark Cavendish, Bradley Wiggins, David Millar, Chris Froome and Ian Stannard – who drove the peloton forward for much of the race.
3. The cyclists had tried to get sprinter Mark Cavendish in a position to speed to the finish, but were not able to catch a breakaway group. Kazakhstan’s Alexander Vinokourov went on to take the gold.
4. 25 year old cyclist Ian Stannard (pictured) lasted the course of the race, as did Bradley Wiggins who was widely expected to drop out before the end to save his strength for the Time Trial, which headed through Richmond a few days later. It didn’t seem to have much of an impact as Wiggo still took the gold.
5. David Millar, who was a controversial selection due to his 2004 doping ban. He was only made eligible to compete when the British Olympic Association was forced to overturn lifetime bans on drug-offenders. However, Millar has since gone on to be praised for his post-ban demeanour by cycling’s top official Pat McQuaid.
6. Three cyclists race past some of the crowd lining the roads in Richmond Park. After the race Mark Cavendish tweeted: “The support along the whole 250km was beyond belief. Absolutely incredible. Thank you to everyone.”
(Captions by George Arnett)