Cav & Wiggo may have to sacrifice 2015 road ambitions

Team GB's Olympic gold medal team pursuit rider Ed Clancy has warned Sir Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish that they won’t be able to just roll into the British track team for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

Speaking ahead of the track world cup in Manchester tonight, Clancy said: “Brad and Cav have both voiced ideas about coming back in.

"They'll have to commit to the track, not just have a road programme. It's hard to do both.

"They've got good things going on the road and it will be up to them if they come back or not. If they do, they'll have to fight for their place.

Steven Burke, another member of the pursuit team that took gold at the London Olympics, thinks Wiggo and Cav would have to focus on the track from the middle of 2015.

“They’ll have to commit to the track, not just have a road programme,” he said. “It’s very unlikely you can do both in the same year.

“At Olympic level, when you’re going for 3-50, you want to be at optimum level. You need to commit more to the track.”

Competition for track team spots won’t just come from established members of the British squad. Ed Clancy added: "It will be up to those guys and how far out they want to commit. Even if they do, you don't know how good our young guys are going to be."

One of those young guys is Sam Harrison, who says he’s not even sure he will get a spot in today’s world cup team pursuit races.

“There’s good competition at the minute,” Harrison told the British Cycling website. “It’s going to be tough to get into the team to be honest.

“There are six of us. Ed and Burkey are almost guaranteed their spot as Olympic champions, they are really strong. I think the third and fourth places are really up for grabs but it is tight between all of us.

“Then again the competition strives you on and it makes everyone stronger.”

The British team beat Russia to win gold at the recent European championships, but today they face stronger competition from the powerhouse Australian and New Zealand teams.

“You never know what the Australians and Kiwis are going to bring and even the Danes are progressing at the minute,” said Harrison.

But he hopes Team GB will be abe to take advantage of playing at home in Manchester. “We know the track, it’s where we go every day, where we ride every day, it’s a natural environment for us and with the home crowd it’s really exciting," he said.

BBC schedule

The BBC will cover the track world cup live on BBC Red Button on November 1 from 19:00-22:00 GMT and November 2 from 18:00-22:00 then online until 22:45. Live on BBC Two from 14:20-17:30 on November 3.

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.


farrell [1946 posts] 3 years ago

Top notch rocket under arses action from the sexy ginger Bond villain.

I think Cav will manage to get back in the team, he'd love an Olympic medal and will get himself to the necessary level and prove his worth.

Wiggins? Not so sure, he's been there, done that and I get the impression that if he's going to do anything that he has to be 100% at it'll be something new and something different. I'd love that to be the hour record.

Sim1 [57 posts] 3 years ago

Out of the two of them:

Which one has said he's done with the road at the end of 2014, and then wants to concentrate on track, explaining that he understands that he would need 2015-2016 on the track to try to get into the team? Answer: Brad

Which one said a few months ago that he doesnt see why he'd have to give up the 2015 road season, and that he knows better than the GB coaches eg Chris Newton when it comes to how much training he'd need to transition to track? Answer: Cav

Let's see how this pans out

Some Fella [890 posts] 3 years ago

Im not sure how it works financially but can both Cav and Wiggins afford to take a huge chunk of time (and I'm presuming wages) out of their pro careers? Im sure they are both on a decent wedge and they both have quite nice lifestyles that they will obviously want to sustain.

Metjas [362 posts] 3 years ago
Some Fella wrote:

Im not sure how it works financially but can both Cav and Wiggins afford to take a huge chunk of time (and I'm presuming wages) out of their pro careers?

I would imagine this is fairly low on their list of priorities - the 'active' career of a pro is relatively short and for guys of the calibre of Cav and Wiggo what you can achieve in sportive/historical terms trumps most financial considerations imo.

I can certainly understand Cav's drive for Olympic gold, but he'll have to be mindful of how much time he spends on either road or track, especially with the new kids on the (road) block. No doubt that the new sprint train with Petacchi and Renshaw is coming on just in time!

jarredscycling [456 posts] 3 years ago

I sure hope Cav focuses on the road because he is going to have a beast of a leadout and needs to reassert himself as the premier sprinter. That being said I wouldn't in the least bit be surprised to see him get distracted trying to focus on too many things. Although like Metjas said I don't think finances will factor in very highly to them