Britain’s Katherine Grainger won an Olympic gold medal at the fourth time of asking today when she powered to victory in the women’s double sculls with partner Anna Watkins in front of 25,000 ecstatic fans on Dorney Lake.
The British duo led from the start and moved further ahead in a commanding performance to finally give Grainger gold to go with the three silver medals she won at the last three Games.
The British duo looked to the skies and raised their arms aloft as they crossed the line, later waving to the fans who had roared them down the last 300 metres of the race and embracing once they got to the side of the lake.
Grainger was in the first British women’s crew to win an Olympic medal when she won silver in a quad in Sydney but the silvers she won in Athens and, particularly Beijing, when she was pipped on the line, had meant the local fans were rooting for the 36-year-old to win.
They got off to a fast start and slowly pulled away from their nearest rivals, Australia, in a commanding performance that is likely to be Grainger’s last at an Olympic regatta.
Australia took silver three seconds back and Poland took third some nine seconds behind that.