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Catharine Pendrel (Luna Pro Team) climbing in the woods 50 seconds behind Gould
Number one women's team sends three to London
Powerhouse women's cycling team, the Luna Pro Team, wrapped up the overall mountain bike World Cup team victory this past weekend in Val d'Isere, France. Next up for the team's three star riders - Catharine Pendrel, Katerina Nash and Georgia Gould - is the 2012 Olympic Games in London on August 11. Any one or even all three could win a medal on the big day.
World champion Pendrel, of Canada, said, "I hope the competition is looking at me as the woman to beat in the Olympics. Being the best on that day is better than being the best on any other day."
Pendrel, who is the Canadian National Champion, will be in her second Olympic Games. "Fourth was a good results in 2008, and I know I can do better."
She expects her teammates will work together in the race although they will be racing in different national team colors.
"I trust that we will work together to give each other the best result. Maybe the last lap, then we'll race as individuals."
Veteran racer Nash, of the Czech Republic, has been with Luna for 11 seasons. She raced the Olympic Games in 1996 and is looking forward to returning again, especially after missing the 2008 Games after a crash.
Gould, of the United States, was eighth in 2008. "I know I can do better in London than I did in Beijing," she said. The US cross country champion is her country's top medal hope in mountain biking.