Another Olympic champion pulls out to focus on European Championships

Olympic champion Victoria Pendleton is to follow Sir Chris Hoy’s lead and miss the Commonwealth Games in Delhi to focus on October's European Championships.

Hoy reluctantly pulled out of the Games on Friday because the European Championships count as a qualifier for the 2012 Olympics, which remains the main focus for both athletes.

Pendleton told the BBC, "It's a no-brainer; points for Olympics qualification are on offer. Unfortunately you are not going to jeopardise going to the London Olympics, so we have to go to the Europeans.

"It's really unfortunate we can't do both competitions and support the Commonwealth Games."

British cycling chief Dave Brailsford believes other cyclists will continue to prioritise those events offering qualification points for the Olympic Games.

"Those who have clear Olympic ambitions have to prioritise: is it the Commonwealth Games or is it Olympic points and those who want to compete in the home Games in London will 100% go for the Olympic points," he told BBC 5 Live.

"Their thinking is that they would like to get as many points on the board as early as possible. They don't want to end up running into the 2012 Games looking at preparation periods being compromised by having to chase points to qualify.

"It's a very tough decision but ultimately they have gone for the Olympic qualification points considering that is what their careers are based around."

Lifelong lover of most things cycling-related, from Moulton Mini adventures in the 70s to London bike messengering in the 80s, commuting in the 90s, mountain biking in the noughties and road cycling throughout. Editor of Simpson Magazine (www.simpsonmagazine.cc). 


handlebarcam [1064 posts] 7 years ago

Never understood the point of the Commonwealth Games. For the athletes, those that don't have anything better to do, I'm sure it is a good gig. But it costs a lot for probably very little return, and makes about as much sense as, say, a sporting competition for countries formerly ruled by the Ottoman Empire.

cat1commuter [1422 posts] 7 years ago

What is more annoying is that the UCI are changing the rules so soon before the Olympics. They've changed the qualification rules - previously the European Champs where just for juniors and didn't offer Olympic qualification points. They've said that each country is only allowed one entry per event. And, having changed what the Olympic events are, they haven't yet run the omnium in its Olympic format!