British Cycling has today announced its long list for the UCI Road World Championships, which take place in Tuscany later this month, with Chris Froome heading the Men’s Road Race line-up, Sir Bradley Wiggins and Alex Dowsett racing in the Men's Time Trial, and Emma Pooley a surprise call-up to the women’s squad, including being Great Britain’s sole representative in the Women's Time Trial.
Lucy Garner, winner of the Junior Women’s Road Race title for the past two years, steps up to the senior squad, while twin brothers Simon and Adam Yates, who both enjoyed success at the Tour de l’Avenir last month - Simon won two stages, while Adam was second overall - are in the squad for the Under-23 Men’s Road Race.
When he won the Tour de France in July, Sky’s Chris Froome said he would target the World Championship Road Race, in which the closing circuit features a tough climb to Fiesole above Florence, as well as a smaller climb of Via Salviati.
Whoever makes the final selection, he will be supported by a strong Great Britain line-up, although missing from the long list today is Garmin-Sharp’s David Millar, who acted as road captain when Mark Cavendish won the rainbow jersey in Copenhagen in 2011, and again in the Olympic Road Race in London last year.
Wiggins, meanwhile, is looking to rescue his 2013 season by adding the World Time Trial Championship to the Olympic title he won in London last year. he's joined by Dowsett, who in the colours of Movistar was a surprise winner of an individual time trial in May's Giro d'Italia.
In the Women’s Road Race, Pooley – the 2010 World Time Trial champion who has put top-level racing on hold to focus on completing her PhD – and Garner will be joined by riders including Lizzie Armitstead, winner of a silver medal behind Marianne Vos of the Netherlands at London 2012.
British Cycling Performance Manager Shane Sutton commented: “I think the selection of the elite teams speak for themselves, we’ve got Olympic medallists, Tour de France winners and former World Champions all in the mix and I think we could do well across the board there.
“The Yates brothers have put some really impressive rides in on the road this season so I’m looking forward to seeing what they can do, and we should be well represented in the Junior events as well.”
The UCI Road World Championships take place in Tuscany from 22-29 September. You can find full information on the official website.
British Cycling says that it will confirm final line-ups “in due course.”
Here are the squads announced today:
Men’s Elite Road Race – 8 places qualified, 11 riders named
Jon Tiernan Locke
Men’s Elite Time Trial
Sir Bradley Wiggins
Women’s Elite Road Race – 6 places qualified, 6 riders named
Women’s Elite Time Trial
U23 Men’s Road Race – 6 places qualified, 8 riders named
U23 Men’s Time Trial
Junior Men’s Road Race
Tao Geoghegan Hart
Junior Men’s Time Trial
Junior Women’s Road Race
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.