SAFELY THROUGH: Australian BMX rider Caroline Buchanan is into the semis in Rio.
SAFELY THROUGH: Australian BMX rider Caroline Buchanan is into the semis in Rio. LUIS EDUARDO NORIEGA

RIO 2016: Buchanan qualifies second fastest in BMX

BMX: Australian Caroline Buchanan said she was more than satisfied with her first-up performance in the women's seedings runs in Rio.

Buchanan finished second fastest with a time 34.752 seconds behind her big rival, Colombian Mariana Pajon, who followed the Aussie with a quicker time of 34.508sec.

The Aussie said she made a few mistakes but was delighted to be where she was ahead of the semi-finals and finals on Saturday morning (from 2.30am AEST).

"I'm happy to come away in that silver position," she said.

"I will have first lane pick for my semi-final and it actually means I won't meet up with Mariana until the final.

"It sees me really well."

Fellow Australian Lauren Reynolds was 10th fastest in 35.666sec and will also ride in the semis.

After a poor performance by the Aussie cycling team at the Rio Games, Buchanan was asked about the pressure on the BMX team, especially after she missed out on a medal in London four years ago when she was one of the favourites and finished only fifth in the final.

"(In) London, there was a lot of pressure from everyone (that) I felt and put on myself," she said.

"Now I'm here, that fire is inside and I'm ready to spring out that mongrel on race day.

"I'm excited, I'm going out there to fight and do my best."

Sam Willoughby was third fastest among the men, whose semis and finals were overnight.

Debutant Bodi Turner posted the 13th best time of the day (35.333sec), while Anthony Dean qualified 20th fastest.

Women's semi-finals, final Saturday (2.30am, 4am AEST)


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