Meet Victoria Pendleton, the English cyclist babe and one to watch at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. See photos, video and a biography of Victoria below.
As a biography, Victoria Pendleton was born on September 24, 1980 in Stotfold, Beldfordshire. When she was 9 years old, she competed in her first 400m race on the grass track at Fordham. When she was 16 years old, an assistant national track coach, Marshal Thomas, discovered her but she chose to concentrate on her studies and received a degree in Sport and Exercise Science from Northumbria University. It was after she graduated from the university that she became a full-time cyclist.
In 2001, she won a bronze and three silver medals at the British National Track Championships. She did qualify for the England Commonwealth Games team, after finishing fourth in 2002. She won fourth place in the 2003 World Championships and 2004 World Championships. She won the World Cup event in Manchester in 2004.
Victoria competed in the 2004 Summer Olympics and finished 6th in Women’s Time Trial and 9th in the Women’s 200m sprint.
During the 2005 World Championships, she won gold in the Women’s Spring and became only the third British woman to become a cycling world champion in over 40 years.
Victoria would win silver in the Women’s 500m time trial at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and would win gold in the Women’s Spring in Melbourne, Australia.
2007 was a huge year for Victoria, as she won gold in the Women’s Team Sprint, the gold in Women’s Sprint and gold in Women’s Keirin at the 2007 UCI Track World Championships. As a triple gold winner, she was named the Sportswoman of the Year for 2007, the only cyclist to win the award in over 20 years. Sports Journalists’ Association of Great Britain also bestowed the Sportswoman of the Year for 2007 award to her as well.
Even though Victoria won the silver in the Women’s Keirin event at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships last week, she is a heavy favorite to win gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
More photos and video of Victoria Pendleton are below.