DANI King admitted the plan had worked to perfection after she helped England’s cyclists to a one-two finish in the road race on the final day of Glasgow 2014.
Team leader Lizzie Armitstead broke clear on the final lap to take Commonwealth Games gold while the retiring Emma Pooley clung on to grab silver on a superb morning for the women’s road race team.
The 23-year-old King, from Hamble, performed her domestique role to a T along with teammates Laura Trott, Hannah Barnes and Lucy Garner, selflessly chasing down any potential breakaways on the opening five laps of the 98km Glasgow circuit.
Armitstead and Pooley then broke clear and King, a gold medallist on the track at the London 2012 Olympic and three-times a world champion, could sit up and roll into the finish, safe in the knowledge that her job was done for the day.
“We were having to cover everything,” she said. “It was so hard at points. People were attacking from the gun.
“But it's so nice to be part of a team where you have a specific role and you just bury yourself to help the cause.”
And Armitstead, so often a runner-up on tour this season, was full of praise for the way her teammates gave their all to her cause in sealing gold.
“It felt special and surreal crossing the line – it’s something I’ve always dreamed about and means so much to me,” she said.
“The team was incredible and it’s the best cycling teamwork I’ve ever been a part of. It’s such a shame Emma [Pooley] is retiring as we finally got it sorted but she did a fantastic job as did all the girls and I’m really proud of them.
“I want to say a massive thank you to Emma. Cycling is a beautiful sport and a team sport, which often gets overlooked, so I’m pleased Emma gets a silver medal as well.
“It was a difficult situation when your teammate is up the road but I saw she didn’t quite have the speed and I had it so easy the whole race as I didn’t touch the front. I thought, win or lose, I’m going for it.”
Commonwealth Games England (CGE) leads and manages the participation of the Team England at the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth Youth Games. We work with sports, Sponsors and Sport England to support the development of athletes and their sports, and to achieve success at Games-time.