Jason Kenny in seventh heaven after winning keirin gold at Tokyo Olympics

Kenny’s victory secured his seventh Games gold, and his ninth overall medal makes him the most decorated Olympian in British history.

Ian Parker
Sunday 08 August 2021 04:24
Jason Kenny celebrates his gold medal on Sunday (Danny Lawson/PA)
Jason Kenny celebrates his gold medal on Sunday (Danny Lawson/PA)

Jason Kenny became the first Briton to win seven Olympic gold medals as he took a stunning victory in the men’s keirin final in Izu.

Kenny had complained of being out of form during the men’s sprint earlier this week but you would not have known it from the way in which he rode away from the field to win by a yawning gap of 0.763 seconds from Azizulhasni Awang of Malaysia.

It also makes Kenny the first Briton to win nine Olympic medals as he adds it to the team sprint silver he took on Tuesday alongside Jack Carlin and Ryan Owens.

Perhaps Kenny’s rivals had been guilty of listening too closely to the downbeat assessment of his physical condition after he finished eighth in the individual sprint competition.

Australia’s Matthew Glaetzer let go of his wheel before the derny had even pulled off.

Kenny checked over his shoulder and realised the advantage he had, charging away and building what proved to be an unassailable lead.

Though he had already handed over his team sprint and individual sprint crowns this week, it means Kenny successfully defended the keirin title he took in Rio – and he did so at the home of the discipline in Izu, where Japan’s elite keirin school is based.

Jason Kenny celebrates after winning gold in the men’s keirin (Danny Lawson/PA)

Holland’s Harrie Lavreysen took bronze two days after being crowned the individual sprint champion.

Kenny could have been forgiven for taking his eye off the ball in this event, with his warm-ups for the quarter-finals earlier on Sunday morning interrupted when his wife Laura crashed heavily in the opening scratch race of the women’s omnium and was slow to get up.

Though Laura recovered to win the following tempo race, her medal hopes suffered a major blow with an early exit from the elimination race.

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