Bolt on water wins kayaking gold

NZ Newswire Updated August 12, 2012, 12:43 am

Dubbed "Usain Bolt on water", kayaker Ed McKeever has continued Britain's golden Olympics by winning the splash and dash 200m K1 final.

McKeever opened up the second last day of competition by claiming Britain's 26th gold medal of the Games on Saturday in canoeing's fastest and newest Olympic discipline.

The fastest man in kayaking justified the Bolt comparison by powering to victory in 36.246 seconds as he led all the way from Saul Craviotto Rivero of Spain and Canada's Mark de Jonge.

Lacking Bolt's brashness, McKeever at least now believes he can live up to his nickname.

"Luckily I have the gold medal to go with it now. I am more worthy of that tagline," he said.

Lisa Carrington won the women's sprint to give New Zealand its fourth gold medal of the Games and a record equalling 13 in total.

Hungarian Natasa Douchev-Janics, a three-time world champion over 200 metres and three-time Olympic gold medallist over 500, had to settle for bronze.

Russia's Yury Postrigay and Alexander Dyachenko won Olympic gold in the men's double kayak 200m sprint, while countryman Sergey Kudyapkin won the 50km walk to add to the Russians' late surge up the medals table.

Early on Saturday, the second last day of competition, the US led the table with 41 gold, with China on 37 and Britain in third.

With three gold medals on Saturday morning and three the day before, Russia has gone ahead of South Korea into fourth with 17 gold.

The US held its place on top of the table as its women's 4x100m relay team obliterated one of track and field's longest-standing world records on Friday night.

The American quartet clocked 40.82 seconds, bettering East Germany's previous world best of 41.37s set in Canberra in 1985.

But America's reign in the men's 4x400m relay was ended by the Bahamas - the first time since 1984 the US haven't won Olympic gold in the event and the first gold medal won in any sport by the Bahamas.

America's stunning women's relay win featured 200m gold medallist Allyson Felix, reigning 100m world champion Carmelita Jeter, Tianna Madison and Bianca Knight.

"I knew that these girls were going to run their hearts out," said Jeter.

"I knew we were running fast. I was already pointing at the clock, saying 'there it is'.

"There was a cloud hanging over us, with people saying 'they can't do this, they're going to drop the stick' but we did it."

Ethiopian Meseret Defar claimed consecutive women's 5000m Olympic titles by beating compatriot Tirunesh Dibaba while Turkey's Asli Cakir Alptekin won the women's 1500m.

Frenchman Renaud Lavillenie took gold in the men's pole vault with a best clearance of 5.97m as Australia's defending champion Steve Hooker failed to clear a height.

The US' table-topping day was helped by their wrestling poster boy Jordan Burroughs winning the 74kg freestyle category - he has now won 38 consecutive bouts.

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