Olympic pursuit champion Rebecca Romero may have ridden her last major race on the track.
Romero is not riding the National Track Championships this week and was not named among the British riders for the opening round of the World Cup in Manchester at the end of the month.
The UCI’s proposal to scrap the individual pursuit from the Olympic Games has forced a shake-up of British Cycling’s plans.
As Cycling Weekly first reported in last week’s magazine, Romero could now switch her focus to the road time trial for the 2012 Olympics in London.
Romero has not ridden a competitive individual pursuit since she was crowned Olympic champion in Beijing last summer. After the Games she hinted she may pursue another sport – but perhaps another branch of cycling is a more likely option for the 29-year-old.
In the summer, she attempted an end-to-end tandem record with another former rower James Cracknell, but the pair quit after a great start. They were 30 hours and almost 500 miles into the Land’s End to John O’Groats ride when she was advised to stop by a doctor because of knee pain.
Romero won a silver medal in the quadruple sculls at the Athens Olympics before switching to cycling. Her transformation was remarkable. She was British time trial champion on the road in 2006, won a silver medal in the World Championship pursuit in 2007 and was a world and Olympic champion in 2008.
British Cycling coach Dan Hunt said: “Becs was going to ride the National Championships but, subject to the UCI’s ratification, the individual pursuit is not going to be an Olympic event.
“The last individual pursuit she rode saw her crowned Olympic champion. She has absolutely nothing to prove at the event.”
With the women’s team pursuit likely to be added to the Olympic schedule, that is one avenue Romero could explore. She was a part of the British trio which won the world title at the first attempt in 2008.
But Hunt acknowledges Romero is in the business of winning individual medals. The fact Romero has not been named among the British riders for the Manchester World Cup seems to confirm her future lies elsewhere.
“The time trial on the road is a possibility for Becs, but I’m not going to say now that she’s going to ride that,” said Hunt.