Spirig wins triathlon in photo finish


Switzerland’s Nicola Spirig won the closest Olympic women’s triathlon in history Saturday, pipping Sweden’s Lisa Norden for gold after a dramatic photo finish. Spirig and Norden were neck-and-neck as they hit the finishing tape in 1hr 59min 48sec after a desperate sprint to the line following a gruelling 1.5km swim, 43km bike ride and 10km run around the picturesque Hyde Park course. Australia’s Erin Densham, two seconds behind, took bronze. British favourite Helen Jenkins dropped off the pace in the final lap and finished fifth, with America’s Sarah Groff fourth. Spirig, 30, a former world junior champion, is Switzerland’s second Olympic triathlon gold-medallist after Brigitte McMahon won the inaugural event at Sydney 2000. “I’m amazed I was even with them at that point because I haven’t been able to get in my running (training),” Jenkins said afterwards. “My team got me to the start line… I’m sorry it didn’t happen. “I really tried my best. We did everything right for this race but I haven’t been able to get in the training in the build-up to this race — everything else was right.”