Kamloops This Week
It would have been easy to count her out.
When an early crash sent Kamloops’ Catharine Pendrel to the ground on Saturday morning in Rio de Janeiro, it looked like disaster for the Canadian cross-country mountain biker. The mishap relegated the defending World Cup champion, three-time Olympian and Canadian medal hopeful to the back of the 29-woman field. A medal appeared all but out of reach.
It would have been a disappointment reminiscent of the 2012 Olympics, which the 35-year-old led for much of the race, only to finish ninth.
However, rrather than crumble, Pendrel got to work. The native of Fredericton, N.B., pushed on after the crash.
When she crossed the finish line one hour, 31 minutes and 41 seconds later, she looked exhausted.
But it didn’t matter — she was an Olympic bronze medallist.
“I didn’t know if it would actually happen and I’m so excited that it did,” Pendrel told CBC after the race.
Her time trailed winner Jenny Rissveds of Sweden (1:30:15) and Maja Wlosczowska of Poland (1:30:52).
“There were so many moments in the race where I wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out and it did. I’m excited and I’m going to celebrate.”