A frustrated Sophie Thornhill admitted to being ‘outfoxed’ by the competition in her quarter-final defeat at the TISSOT UCI Track Cycling World Cup in London.
Competing in the first fully integrated World Cup event involving para cyclists, Stockport-born Thornhill and partner Helen Scott were eliminated by fellow Brits Alex Pope and Albin Geneix in Friday’s mixed tandem.
But while clearly disappointed not to make more of a mark on what was a milestone occasion for para cycling, the double world champion remained philosophical in defeat.
“It’s disappointing,” she said. “I think going into the race we thought we had a chance and unfortunately we were outfoxed.
“But it was an amazing experience for us to be here so we are happy with that.”
Thornhill’s assessment was shared by teammate Scott, who said the duo had paid the price for allowing a big gap to appear between themselves and their opponents during the early stages of the race.
“We were a little bit surprised that they went out so far from the finish,” Scott said. “We had our eyes on them, we could see them, but we just underestimated how quickly they were going to accelerate against us.
“We got caught napping a little bit but it’s all a good learning experience for the next time we come up against them.”
Thornhill also reserved special praise for the vocal home crowd at Lee Valley VeloPark, who provided a lively atmosphere throughout in east London.
“It’s brilliant,” she added. “We’ve actually both raced here in the past in two different things so it’s amazing to be back in this incredible and historic velodrome and it’s wonderful that para cycling is getting the showing that it is.”
The next TISSOT UCI Track Cycling World Cup on UK boards takes place at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow from 8-10 November 2019. Sign up now at bit.ly/NextStopGlasgow to access tickets before they go on sale to the general public
Image courtesy of British Cycling via YouTube, with thanks.