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Page last updated at 15:04 GMT, Monday, 28 June 2010 16:04 UK

Emma Pooley shocked after dethroning Nicole Cooke

Emma Pooley

Pooley deprives Cooke of national crown

Emma Pooley was surprised after she ended Nicole Cooke's run as national road race champion on Sunday.

Cooke was going for a 10th consecutive win, only for her fellow Team GB Olympian to upset the odds.

Pooley, 27, from Norwich, said she thought the race had played into Cooke's strengths.

"By the final lap I was sure I couldn't drop Nicole at the hills, she's really strong at the moment, I thought it'd come down to a small group sprint."

She added: "Without being defeatist, that's not my strength, so I was pretty resigned to coming last from that group.

"Then suddenly I had a gap and I wasn't waiting, so yes, I'm pretty surprised," she said.

Pooley, the 2008 time trial silver medallist in Beijing, said she was not confident of her chances when the race was shortened from eight to four laps following a pile-up.

"It's a really tough circuit, but it's only tough if you do it enough times.

"I have every sympathy for the organisers, and I'm really sorry for the girls who crashed. I just wish they'd thought about it in advance a bit," she said.

"Cutting our race down to half the length really changes how it is, I ate so much pasta last night, and I've only burnt off half of it," she added.



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