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Silver lining for Armitstead in London

Lizzie Armitstead (Great Britain) carries most home hopes.

Lizzie Armitstead (Great Britain) carries most home hopes. (Image credit: Daniel Simms)

Lizzie Armitstead kick-started Great Britain's Olympic Games with silver in the women's road race. The 23-year-old joined an attack in the final 50 kilometres with Marianne Vos (Netherlands), Olga Zabelinskaya (Russia) and Shelley Olds (USA) and although she finished strongly, Armitstead was unable to come past Vos on the line.

Armitstead's performance capped off a fine display from Great Britain's women with Emma Pooley laying down the ground work for Armitstead move.

"I feel really strange. I'm a bit shocked. Emma did everything that was asked on Box Hill. We wanted to have an aggressive race. I'm happy. Maybe I should have jumped Vos earlier, but she was the stronger rider. I am thrilled. I am still a bit shell-shocked, to be honest. I cannot really get my head around it. I suppose the disappointment of not winning gold is starting to sink in a little bit, but I am overjoyed with silver."

"I'm just so happy that I committed to the breakaway and I was thee with Vos and if you know much about women's cycling then you know that she's the best rider in the world on most kinds of course."

Armitstead, who fell out with teammate Nicole Cooke during last year's Worlds in Copenhagen praised her teammates at the finish. Cooke came into the race as the defending Olympic champion but saw her chances of victory disappear from view once Armitstead and her break companions had built up a lead.

"I'm just really proud of the team of girls," she said. "We stick together through quite a lot and there was a lot of talk, there's team Sky, and as a group of women who came together from different teams to work together it's just a really good result."

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Daniel Benson

 Daniel Benson is the Editor in Chief at both Cyclingnews.com and BikePerfect.com. Based in the UK, he has worked within cycling for almost 15 years, and he joined the Cyclingnews team in 2008 as the site's first UK-based Managing Editor. In that time, he has reported on over a dozen editions of the Tour de France, several World Championships, the Tour Down Under, Spring Classics, and the London 2012 Olympic Games. With the help of the excellent editorial team, he runs the coverage on Cyclingnews and has interviewed leading figures in the sport including UCI Presidents and Tour de France winners.