China edged out Germany to win the first track cycling gold of the Tokyo Olympics in the women’s team sprint on Monday after earlier breaking the world record.
China set a new world best of 31.804sec in the heats and were then too quick for Germany in the final, their 31.895 just ahead of the Germans’ 31.980. The Russian Olympic Committee beat the Netherlands to take bronze. It means China retain their Olympic title after also winning the women’s team sprint in Rio, having claimed bronze in London four years earlier.
This is the first time that China have won a third medal in the same track cycling event, with Bao Shanju taking over from Gong Jinjie to partner Zhong Tianshi and clinch the country’s 28th gold of the Games. They had earlier broken their own world record of 31.928, which was set in Rio, with their time in the final against Germany also below that mark in 2016. Lea Sophie Friedrich and Emma Hinze pushed the Chinese close but failed to add an Olympic gold to Germany’s victory at the world championships last year.
Hinze will be a contender for more medals in the women’s individual sprint and keirin later in the week.