Rio 2016: Relay bronze for Beagles Ohuruogu
PUBLISHED: 04:44 21 August 2016 | UPDATED: 04:44 21 August 2016
PA/Press Association Images
Team GB women make podium in 4x400m event
Newham & Essex Beagles’ Christine Ohuruogu anchored the women’s 4x400m relay squad to a bronze medal at the Rio Olympics as Team GB surpassed their record medal total from the London 2012 Games.
With the United States and Jamaica well ahead, it was a battle between the rest for bronze, with Emily Diamond giving Team GB a healthy lead going into the final lap after opening legs from Eilidh Doyle and Anyika Onuora.
Former 400m gold and silver medalist Ohuruogu then pulled away on the home straight to cross the line in 3:25.88, after the bronze medal success of the women’s 4x100m squad the night before, and seal Team GB’s 66th medal of the Rio Games.
And Ohuruogu, who became only the second GB athlete after javelin thrower Steve Backley to medal at three successive Olympics, said: “It wasn’t about me, I just wanted a team effort and that’s [what we got].
“After the heats we knew a medal was up for grabs. It’s all well and good saying that, but we actually had to come out and deliver and we really needed a strong performance from all the girls.
“They set me up in a good position and I just rolled with what they gave me. You always hope for more medals. I worked so hard for Rio – probably a bit too hard, overcooking things a little bit.
“I was feeling a bit down in the dumps after not making the [400m] final, so I had to lift myself up.
“I’m really proud of the team. For all of us it’s really nice to go home with something. The final bend is the danger zone because that’s where people calculate what they’ve got left for the finish straight. So I thought that I wasn’t going to wait and see who charged, I was just going to go.
“I felt like the devil himself was after me, that’s how scared I was!”
Diamond added: “I’m on cloud nine. It has been a whirlwind. I’m a bit speechless and have been in tears. My mum’s been in tears. It’s just amazing. We came into this knowing we had a shot at bronze. The Americans and Jamaicans are just so far ahead, but we knew bronze was up for grabs.
“Christine gave us a pep talk in the call room telling us to keep composed and not to panic if things aren’t going to plan in the race. And we did that. To come away with a bronze medal is the icing on the cake for the season.”