Tallent’s heartbreaking disqualification
In a scene reminiscent of Australia’s Jane Saville in the 2000 Sydney Olympics, Australian race walker Claire Tallent has suffered a gut-wrenching disqualification in the Women's 20km Race Walk Final with just one lap to go.
Tallent was in the lead less than 4km from the finish line when her gold medal hopes were dashed. She’d already received two red cards during the race, the third sealing her fate.
The Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games silver medallist, who gave birth to her first child, Harvey, last year, was in the lead when race judges gave her a third red card around the 16km mark.
"I thought it was my day," she said. "I picked up two red cards (early in the race) and after that I sat back and let the race unfold. I felt as fresh as a daisy and ready to win."
Fellow Australian Jemima Montag went on to take gold in a time of 1:32:50. Alana Barber from New Zealand took silver and Bethan Davies from Wales took bronze.
Tallent, who was in tears on the side of the road after the disqualification, said: “I wanted to show that women can have babies and come back and be competitive."
Tallent showed her character by pulling herself together, cheering on Montag and then embracing her teammate at the finish line as she claimed gold.
"I’m old, but all kudos should go to Jemima (Montag), as she is going to carry the flag for many years to come."