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And could that house a women's squad too?...

Team Sky need a spiritual home similar to those of football teams, says the team's general manager Dave Brailsford.

And in a strong hint that pleas for a similarly well-funded and supported women's team might be finally recognised, he described women's cycling as "potentially an area where we could do something.”

“You can go to Chelsea, and see their shop, and see their stadium,” Brailsford told the Telegraph.

“You can’t go and see Team Sky, or Rabobank – not that you’d want to see Rabobank.

"It’s time that we came together and had a coaching base, similar to what we’ve had in British cycling, where you pull together expertise in a single location. We’re trying to create a home where people can come and see Team Sky.”

And with the collapse of women's team AA Drink - Leontien.nl, which boasted Lizzie Armitstead, Emma Pooley and Sharon Laws, perhaps Sky will step into the breach to save them - after all, Pooley has already spoken about retiring in the face of the funding crisis.

Brailsford said: “As it currently exists, you’ve got Laura Trott, Jo Rowsell and Dani King, then you’ve got three or four very good Welsh riders, including Lucy Garner, and that’s where there is something to be done.

"There’s a development model, and we’ve identified it as potentially an area where we could do something.”

 

After an unpromising start, having to be bribed by her parents to learn to ride without stabilisers, Sarah became rather keener on cycling in her university years, and was eventually persuaded to upgrade to proper road cycling by the prospect of a shiny red Italian bike, which she promptly destroyed by trapping a pair of knickers in the rear derailleur. Sarah writes about about cycling every weekend on road.cc.