Four women’s road cyclists have been named for the London 2012 Olympics with the ever rising star Lizzie Armitstead and reigning Olympic champion Nicole Cooke joined by Lucy Martin and Emma Pooley.
Whether both Armitstead (pictured above) and Cooke, the star riders of the team, were to be selected on the team together had been questioned after their public falling out following the World Championships in Denmark last year when Armitstead claimed Cooke rode for herself and not for the team.
But Dave Brailsford, performance director at British Cycling, has put aside their personal rivalries to select a team he feels most capable of claiming gold.
“Narrowing down the women’s road team from six riders to four [leaving out Katie Colclough and Sharon Laws] wasn’t an easy decision for the selectors to make, but we believe that the four riders we have selected will give us the best opportunity of winning the race.”
Cooke is the defending Olympic road race champion whilst Pooley is an Olympic Time Trial silver medallist so there is a wealth of experience on the team. Lizzie Armitstead and Lucy Martin will both make their Olympic debuts in London. The four riders will compete for Team GB in the road race on July 29 with Armitstead also joining Pooley in the time trial on August 1.
Speaking of her selection, Nicole Cooke said: “I am honoured to be representing Team GB at the 2012 Olympic Games and doing everything I can to deliver a gold medal for our team.
“We have a set of riders with real potential and I am looking forward to playing my part in delivering that gold.”
Their selection brings the number of cyclists selected for Team GB to 22, with the selection of the men’s road race riders to be announced at a later date.
Jessica Whittington, Sportsister
The Women’s Sports Magazine