Team GB medal hopefuls in action today: August 2

 

Your one-stop guide to the Team GB medal hopes in action at the Olympics today...

Sir Chris Hoy, Philip Hindes and Jason Kenny

Ages: 36, 19 and 24

Main Event: Men’s Team Sprint

Rival: Germany

Medal Prospects: Will probably take silver

There has been a lot of tinkering with the GB Sprint Team since Jamie Staff – the fastest starter in the world – retired. Despite this the team have consistently been winning medals. Their most recent competition, the World Championships in Melbourne, saw the team disqualified, but this was due to an infringement by 19-year-old Philip Hindes who was brought in to get experience.

Date of event: August 2

Odds: 5/1

 

Victoria Pendleton and Jessica Varnish

Age: 31 and 21

Main Event: Women’s Team Sprint

Rival: Australia

Medal Prospect: Silver

Jessica Varnish has only been Victoria Pendleton’s starter for a year or so, but the duo have been solidly improving and set the world record at the Track World Cup in February. That record has since been broken by a very strong looking German team. The competition in London will be fierce but these two will definitely be in the mix for a medal.

Date of event: August 2

Odds: 3/1

 

Ed Clancy, Peter Kennaugh, Steven Burke and Geraint Thomas

Age: 27, 23, 24 and 26

Main Event: Men’s Team Pursuit

Rival: Australia

Medal Prospects: Aiming for gold

Australia hadn’t lost in a significant Men’s Team Pursuit since the Beijing Olympics when Great Britain won the title. However, in April Team GB put in a superb performance to knock the Aussies off their perch in Melbourne and beat the world record that they set when they won gold in 2008. This is particularly significant because the team that has won the World Championships prior to an Olympics has gone on to win gold in the summer for the last three Games.

Dates of event: August 2 – August 3

Odds: Evens

 

Rebecca Adlington

Age: 23

Place of Birth: England

Main Event: 800m freestyle

Rival: Lotte Friis, Denmark

Medal Prospects: Britain’s most successful swimmer will be aiming for gold although may miss out to world record holder Federica Pellegrini.

Despite her young age, Rebecca Adlington already has Olympic, World, European, Commonwealth and British titles to her name and is now looking to add to the two golds she claimed in Beijing. Now fully recovered from the problems she had with nerves that struck in the year or so following her 2008 success, Adlington is tipped by many to at least win gold in the 800m freestyle.

Dates of event: August 2 – August 3

Odds: 6/11

 

Laura Bechtolsheimer

Age: 27

Place of Birth: Germany

Main Event: Dressage

Rival: There are several individuals who will prove stiff competition for a medal.

Medal Prospects: In what will be a tight competition she has a good chance of getting on the podium.

The dressage event at London 2012 is predicted to be a very close fought affair but Team GB’s Laura Bechtolsheimer has a very good chance of wining a medal. She has an impressive list of achievements to her name, having won the British National Championships three times and being Britain’s first ever medal winner at a World Championship event.

Dates of event: August 2 – August 9

Odds: 4/1

 

Peter Wilson

Age: 25

Place of Birth: England

Main Event: Double-Trap Shooting

Rival: Joshua Richmond, USA

Medal Prospects: Britain’s outstanding medal hope in the shooting is a serious contender for gold.

Mark Wilson has enjoyed a very successful year which has seen him win his first gold medal on the World Cup circuit and climb to No.1 in the World Rankings last August. Since then he has slipped to second in the world but he did manage to set a world record at the World Cup earlier this year.

Date of event: August 2

Odds: 2/1

 

 

Chris Bartley, Peter Chambers, Richard Chambers and Rob Williams

Age: 28, 22, 27 and 27

Main Event: Men’s Lightweight Fours

Rivals: Australia

Medal Prospects: Will be in the fight for either a gold or silver medal.

A very encouraging last year saw the crew take silver at the Rowing World Cup in Belgrade followed by bronze in Lucerne and then a superb gold in Munich in June, overcoming great rivals Australia. This excellent run of results suggests that London could be the time for this crew to really shine.

Dates of event: July 28 - August 2

Odds: 15/8

 

Zac Purchase & Mark Hunter

Ages: 26 and 34

Main Event: Men’s Double Scull

Rivals: New Zealand

Medal Prospects: A disrupted 2012 so far means the pair are unlikely to do better than bronze.

Although they won in Beijing and are current world champions, the duo suffered some setbacks in their preparations for London. Illness played its part in some of their performances this year and they finished a disappointing sixth place in Munich. With their opponents pulling ahead there needs to be a real improvement but it would be a mistake to write this duo off.

Dates of event: July 28 - August 2

Odds: 7/2

 

Fran Halsall

Age: 22

Place of Birth: England

Main Event: 100m Freestyle

Rival: Ranomi Kromowidjojo of the Netherlands is the favourite for the 100m freestyle

Medal Prospects: Her main aim is gold in the 100m freestyle but she has the ability to get into the medals in any of her other events.

Fran Halsall will be fighting on many fronts in the London Games as she is the only swimmer to have qualified for three separate individual disciplines as well as taking part in two of the relays. Currently ranked as world No.2 in the 50m freestyle and No.4 in the 100m freestyle she looks set to win a medal in at least one of those events, although she says the 100m is her main aim. Her third event is 100m butterfly in which she is ranked sixth in the world.

Dates of event: August 1 - August 2

Odds: 12/1

 

Andy Murray

Age: 25

Place of Birth: Scotland

Main Event: Men’s Singles Tennis

Rival: Anyone of the two men ranked above him – although a rematch with Roger Federer is the one that will be most hotly anticipated.

Medal Prospects: He came so close at Wimbledon that he will surely back himself to go that one step further on his return to the grass courts.

Andy Murray became the first British man to reach a Wimbledon final for over 70 years in July but was prevented from winning the title by a sublime Roger Federer. The London Olympics sees tennis return to the grass courts of West London and give the Scot another chance to claim glory at the home of British tennis. Murray's job became a little easier when Spain's Rafael Nadal pulled out of the Games.

Dates of event: July 28 – August 5

Odds: 17/2

 

Ben Ainslie

Age: 35

Place of Birth: England

Main Event: Men’s Finn

Rival: Zach Riley, USA

Medal Prospects: Looking to make it four gold medals.

London 2012 will be Ben Ainslie’s fifth Olympic Games and sees him in the hunt for his fifth medal to add to his three golds and one silver. Ainslie has dominated the

sport in recent years and in May won seven out of nine races at the Finn Gold Cup in Falmouth. However at the pre-Games regatta in June he showed he could have an off-day when he capsized and finished second.

Dates of event: July 29 – August 5

Odds: ½

 

Iain Percy & Andrew Simpson

Age: Both 36

Main Event: Men’s Star

Rival: Robert Scheidt & Bruno Prada, Brazil

Medal Prospects: Will be aiming for a silver

The duo won gold in 2008 in Beijing but their build-up to 2012 was difficult as Iain Percy was hit with a back problem at the World Championships in 2011. However, the two have worked hard and returned to the World Cup circuit in April where they vied with their Brazilian rivals for top spot. Their final warm-up competition saw them finish third in Weymouth in June.

Dates of event: July 29 – August 5

Odds: 7/2

 

Annie Lush, Lucy MacGregor and Kate MacGregor

Age: 32, 25 and 20

Main Event: Women’s Elliot 6m Team

Rival: Team USA are their closest competitor for top spot.

Medal Prospects: Should get at least silver but will be aiming for gold

The team first came together in 2010 and have since won National, European and World Championship titles. Annie Lush has experience at Olympic level having been part of the GB set up in Athens in 2004. Lucy MacGregor, the elder of the two sisters, skippers the boat and has a long and impressive track record for a 25-year-old. Her younger sister Kate, 20, may not have as much experience but has ample skill. As a group they have already shown their ability and will be firmly in the hunt for a medal come Games time.

Dates of event: July 29 – August 11

Odds: 11/5

 

Zac Purchase & Mark Hunter

Ages: 26 and 34

Main Event: Lightweight Double Scull

Rivals: New Zealand

Medal Prospects: A disrupted 2012 so far means the pair are unlikely to do better than bronze.

Although they won in Beijing and are current world champions, the duo suffered some setbacks in their preparations for London. Illness played its part in some of their performances this year and they finished a disappointing sixth place in Munich. With their opponents pulling ahead there needs to be a real improvement but it would be a mistake to write this duo off.

Dates of event: July 29 – August 4

Odds: 7/2

 

Women’s Hockey

Rival: The Netherlands are favourites and are also in Team GB’s group.

Medal Prospects: The team should be in the hunt for bronze.

Team GB’s women are ranked 4th in the world coming into the Olympics. An encouraging performance saw them finish runners-up in the Women’s Championship Trophy at the start of the year but their most recent competition, the London Cup, saw them finish in fifth. However, four of the side’s key players were unavailable for the competition so the team will almost certainly put on better displays in the Games.

Dates of event: July 29 – August 10

Odds: 11/2

 

Alex Gregory, Tom James, Pete Reed, Andrew Triggs-Hodge

Ages: 28, 28, 30 and 33

Main Event: Men’s Four

Rivals: Australia beat Team GB in June

Medal Prospects: Will be a hard fought battle for gold between GB and Australia

The team won gold in 2008 in a close race for the finish against Australia and France. This time round, with Alex Gregory rowing instead of Steve Williams, they will be looking to recreate that success. The Australian team are in great form so it promises to be a real battle.

Dates of event: July 30 – August 4

Odds: 8/13

 

Bryony Shaw

Age: 29

Place of Birth: England

Main Event: Windsurfing RS:X

Rival: Marina Alabau, Spain

Medal Prospects: Gold is the dream but silver or bronze might be more realistic.

Bryony Shaw became Britain’s first Olympic female medallist in windsurfing when she took home bronze from the 2008 Games. Since Beijing she has seen great success, her biggest highlight being a gold medal at the 2010 World Cup in France. She ranked fourth at the last World Championships but will see herself as having a great chance of winning gold.

Dates of event: July 31 – August 7

Odds: 4/1

 

Nick Dempsey

Age: 31

Place of Birth: England

Main Event: Windsurfing RS:X

Rival: Nimrod Mashich, Israel

Medal Prospects: Determined to get gold but current world number Mashich will probably get in his way. Silver at best.

Nick Dempsey comes into the 2012 Games determined to finish on the podium after a disappointing fourth place in Beijing. Since 2008 he has worked hard and enjoyed success, winning World Championship gold for the first time in 2009. That World Championships happened to have been at Weymouth and Portland, the venue for this year’s Olympic – surely a promising sign for the first Britain to win a medal in windsurfing.

Dates of event: July 31 – August 7

Odds: 4/1

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