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Australian women’s team left heartbroken at end of Olympic road race

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A group of six formed at the front, including Amanda Spratt (GreenEDGE-AIS)

A group of six formed at the front, including Amanda Spratt (GreenEDGE-AIS) (Image credit: CJ Farquharson)
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At speed - Amanda Spratt (GreenEdge-AIS)

At speed - Amanda Spratt (GreenEdge-AIS) (Image credit: CJ Farquharson)
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Shara Gillow (Orica-Greenedge) gets to show of her Australian National TT Champ colors.

Shara Gillow (Orica-Greenedge) gets to show of her Australian National TT Champ colors. (Image credit: Jon Devich)
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Australian national champion Shara Gillow (Greenedge_AIS)

Australian national champion Shara Gillow (Greenedge_AIS) (Image credit: Peter Kraiker/studiofstop.com)
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Chloe Hosking crosses the line at Halle - Buizingen

Chloe Hosking crosses the line at Halle - Buizingen (Image credit: Photopress.be)
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An overjoyed Chloe Hosking (Specialized - lululemon) celebrates beating Giorgia Bronzini (Diadora-Pasta Zara) and Marianne Vos (Rabo Women)

An overjoyed Chloe Hosking (Specialized - lululemon) celebrates beating Giorgia Bronzini (Diadora-Pasta Zara) and Marianne Vos (Rabo Women) (Image credit: CJ Farquharson/WomensCycling.net)

Australia’s young sprint hope for the women’s Olympic road race, Chloe Hosking crossed the line more than 16 minutes behind race winner Marianne Vos, visibly upset that she had performed well below expectations that day. Coming in to The Mall so far down, both Hosking and Australian road champion Amanda Spratt did not record an official place for the race.

"There is probably a mushroom cloud somewhere on Box Hill that says Chole," Hosking told The Herald Sun. ""It's funny, I felt really good on the Staple Hill and then on Box Hill I was hanging, hanging, hanging [on] and then bang," she said.

Shara Gillow was the best placed of the Australian’s in 29th-place however, a dropped chain inside the final 10km meant she lost contact with the group sprinting for fourth place. Spratt had also experienced bad luck during the race, with two punctures causing her to expend precious energy but like Hosking, made no excuses for their performance.

"Chloe and I didn’t really have the legs today, to be in the race when it really went," said Spratt.

"We had a few words together and we are quite close. You don't have to say too much to know how each other were feeling and it's not the greatest day," said Spratt.

Hosking spoke after the race and was struggling to remain composed, holding back tears as she spoke with the media. It was a disappointing end for the 21-year-old but despite underperforming, she was already talking about the future.

"Right now, so I don't fall apart [emotionally] I'm saying to myself that I'm 21 and while I didn't have the race I wanted to have, I've hopefully got another two or three Olympics ahead of me," Hosking told Fairfax.

"I feel like I've let some people down... but this doesn't make me want to give up, it makes me want to push even harder," she said.

Gillow will need to put the events of the road race behind her as she prepares for the time trial on Wednesday. The reigning national time trial champion was confident ahead of her Olympic test.

"I have high expectations. I love riding time trials and this one is one I would love to win gold for Australia in," she said.