• ESPN Podium

Hoy doubles up for historic feat

ESPN staff
August 7, 2012

Every day of the Olympics, we at ESPN Towers will award gold, silver and bronze medals to the top three moments. Here are our choices for day 11...

Medal Table


Sir Chris Hoy has admitted that if he retired after the Sydney Games in 2000, he would have been ecstatic to end up with one silver medal. Twelve years later, you can only imagine how he must feel to have finished his Olympic career on six golds and one silver.

When he took the keirin gold in front of an electric Velodrome crowd on Tuesday, he was crowned Britain's most successful Olympian, overtaking Sir Steve Redgrave. Some may argue that Redgrave's achievement is more impressive as his golds spanned five different Olympics, but what's not in doubt is the place in immortality that both have earned through enduring excellence.

And it could have been even more for Hoy, had he not been denied the chance to take part in the individual sprint by the ruling that each country could only enter one competitor.

All in all, it was a phenomenal performance from GB in the Velodrome: seven golds from ten events, as well as a relegation from the women's team sprint final, a silver in the women's individual sprint for Victoria Pendleton and a bronze for Ed Clancy in the men's omnium.

There were reports of Hoy's father being mobbed as he left the arena - probably pushy parents begging for him to teach their children how to ride. I bet he didn't see this coming when he whipped the stabilisers off the young Chris' bike.


If you thought the Neville brothers were impressive... You're probably one of them. But seriously, they've got nothing on the Brownlee boys, Alistair and Johnny, who grabbed gold and bronze respectively for Britain in the triathlon on Tuesday. Johnny managed to medal despite incurring a 15-second penalty for a transition error from swim to bike.

And Alistair came through plenty of adversity of his own, having been injured for the first half of the year after tearing his Achilles. Instead of dwelling on his injury, he dug room for a swimming pool to be installed in his back garden, so he could practice running underwater. I know, we've all done it.

But you have to say, compared to Phil Neville giving that penalty away against Romania at Euro 2000, he still has some work to do in the sporting sphere.


Algeria's Taoufik Makhloufi was thrown out of the Olympics yesterday when it was ruled he didn't try hard enough in his 800m heat. That decision was later reversed after medical advice, and Makhloufi - probably sensing he really needed to show he was trying - responded by cruising to a comfortable victory in the 1500m. If only Team GB had known it works like that: Dai Greene could have been thrown out after his semi, and then welcomed back for a certain gold. Or maybe they could have sent Phillips Idowu to the same doctor Makhloufi visits.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.