Joe Clarke stormed to Team GB's second gold medal of the 2016 Olympic Games after a faultless run in the final of K-1 canoe-slalom in Rio. The 23-year-old kept his nerve during the medal run, escaping without a single penalty to take victory ahead of Slovakia's Peter Kauzer and Jiri Prskavec of the Czech Republic.
The Stoke-on-Trent canoeist had never previously won a major title, having won silver at consecutive European Championships in the K-1 team event, but he produced his best when it mattered on the biggest stage of all. The Mark Ratcliffe-coached Clarke only began paddling in 2003 yet his route from rookie to Olympic champion is complete.
"Everything pieced together so nicely, I can't put it into words," he told BBC Radio Five Live. "I knew I was capable but to put down that run in the Olympic final, it is a dream come true.
"It is hard to put it into words how much work has gone into this. I have spent a lot of time here, I know this course like the back of my hand and it has paid off. There has been lots of ups and downs but it is just fantastic
"When I woke up I struggled to have breakfast I was so nervous with all the emotions. I thought if it goes to plan I could come away with a medal but to be Olympic champion it is something you dream about."
Clarke's success comes 24 hours after world number one David Florence failed to win a medal in the C-1 event, after an error-strewn display saw him finish last. GB will be hoping for further medals in the canoe slalom event, with Florence teaming up with Richard Hounslow in the canoe double on Thursday (11 August).