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Sunday, 1 October, 2000, 08:48 GMT 09:48 UK
Double British pentathlon success
Bronze medallist Allenby (left) and gold winner Cook
Allenby (left) and Cook finish Britain's successful Games
Britain's Stephanie Cook produced a storming run in the final discipline of the modern pentathlon to land Great Britain's 11th gold of the Sydney Games.

Starting 49 seconds behind American leader Emily de Riel, Cook stormed around the 3,000 metre cross-country track to overtake team-mate Kate Allenby and de Riel in the closing stages and win the gold.

De Riel took the silver with Allenby in the bronze medal position.

Finish of the pentathlon
Cook crosses the line for the gold
Cook, who was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, and is a qualified doctor, has only been a full-time modern pentathlete since September 1999 and was down in eighth place going into the final of the five disciplines.

It had looked like Kate Allenby would provide Britain's best chance of pentathlon gold as she trailed de Riel by just five seconds going into the final discipline.

The sense of victory was almost too much for Cook to take in at the end.

"I can never even hope to thank everybody who has contributed to this," said Cook. "I'm just lost for words."


I just never dreamt it would be like this. I just can't believe it.
  Stephanie Cook

Allenby was delighted to join her team-mate on the podium.

"We've got two medals," said Allenby. "This is a really strong field and I can't believe we've got two athletes on the podium."

And she added: "I made a couple of mistakes here and there but she's (Cook) trained so hard and she thoroughly deserves everything."

Kate Allenby in the fencing
Allenby's fencing helped her finish third
Team manager Dominic Mahony added: "To be honest we knew the jumping would sort the pentathletes out and we were confident we had two strong runners.

"They did a great job in the fencing and we were just looking at them getting a clean ride in the showjumping, knowing what Steph would do in the run.

"Kate did a great job staying out in front in the run and it was just a matter of time before Steph would get up with her."

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See also:

01 Oct 00 |  Photo Gallery
Women's modern pentathlon - in pictures
30 Sep 00 |  Other Sports
Allenby chases final day glory
21 Aug 00 |  Other Sports
Passport to success?
09 Aug 00 |  Other Sports
Day in the life of a pentathlete
09 Aug 00 |  Other Sports
'Hell pent' on success
01 Oct 00 |  Other Sports
Five star golden girls
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