10:45am Saturday 4th August 2012
By Andrew Kilmurray
ED Clancy roared to a gold medal in cycling’s men’s team pursuit at the London 2012 Olympic Velodrome – and then declared “I’m not sure it’ll ever get better than that!"
He led the quartet which raced to a thrilling victory in a world record time on the second day of competition.
Newton-le-Willows-based Clancy, along with Geraint Thomas, Peter Kennaugh and Steven Burke clocked three minutes 51.659 seconds to triumph by a supreme margin ahead of fierce rivals Australia.
Afterwards Clancy wrote on his Twitter account: “Well I’m not sure it’ll ever get any better than that! Home Olympic gold! Thank you soo much to EVERYONE that’s helped us along our journey!”
Clancy, 27, missed out on the celebrations on Friday night because he is competing on the track in the gruelling six-discipline men’s omnium on Saturday and Sunday, when he will be among the leading contenders to collect a medal.
However, he did share his moment of joy with his 11,000 followers on the micro-blogging network by tweeting an image of the gold medal alongside a Union flag he had been given by a spectator.
Clancy wrote: “There she is! Ps not sure who’s flag I grabbed on the track, but hope you don’t mind if I keep it?"
The British quartet, who won Track Cycling World Championships gold in Melbourne in April, now have successfully defended the title won by Clancy, Thomas, Bradley Wiggins and Paul Manning in Beijing.
It means Yorkshire-born Clancy, who has lived Newton-le-Willows for six years, and Welshman Thomas, who also lived there for a spell before moving to Manchester, are double Olympic gold medallists.
Bradley Wiggins, the Tour de France winner and road time-trial Olympic champion, watched the his old track pals’ stunning victory.
After the team's performance amid an electric atmosphere in the velodrome, the watching Mark Cavendish, who was summarising for the BBC described Clancy as "incredible".
He added: "Ed Clancy is probably the best team pursuiter in the world and probably the most experienced."
Sir Chris Hoy, Britain’s five time cycling gold medallist later tweeted: “@Ed_Clancy that was something special mate.”
The Royal Mail, as a way of celebrating Team GB’s Olympic champions last night issued a special stamp – featuring Clancy and Co – to mark their gold medal success.
A post box in the hometown of each of the Olympic champions is also being painted gold.
However, it remains to be seen whether it will be in the St Helens borough or in Barnsley, where Clancy was born.
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