Katie Archibald to miss European Championships in key Olympic year

Scot will focus on Nations Cup events ahead of Paris Olympics in August

Katie Archibald at the 2022 european championships
(Image credit: Alex Whitehead/SWpix)

Two-time Olympic champion Katie Archibald will miss next week’s European Track Championships, the Great Britain Cycling Team (GBCT) has revealed. 

Archibald holds the record for the most European titles, having earned her 18th, 19th and 20th in 2022, but will not be part of the GBCT squad in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands on 10 January. 

A press contact from British Cycling told Cycling Weekly that the 29-year-old’s focus in the first half of this year will be on the UCI Nations Cup events. 

There will be three Nations Cup rounds before the Olympics this August, each worth more qualifying points than the European Championships. 

Speaking to the media at the UCI Track Champions League last year, Archibald said “the big one” will be the Nations Cup round in Adelaide, Australia, scheduled for 2-4 February. She is then expected to compete at the round in Milton, Canada in April. 

Currently, Archibald is on a road training camp with her trade team Ceratizit-WNT. 

Besides the Scot's absence, GBCT will take a full strength women’s endurance squad to the European Championships. 

Team pursuit world champions Josie Knight, Anna Morris, Meg Barker and Elinor Barker will all travel to Apeldoorn, alongside Madison world champion Neah Evans, Sophie Lewis and Jess Roberts. 

The men’s endurance squad will also be charged with firepower, with Ineos Grenadiers rider Ethan Hayter returning to the boards for the first time since 2022. He will be joined by fellow former team pursuit world champions Dan Bigham, Ollie Wood and Ethan Vernon as the quartet look to gain qualifying points for the Olympics, following a disastrous crash at the 2023 World Championships

Women’s sprint world champion Emma Finucane will lead the sprint squad’s hopes, along with Olympic silver medallist Jack Carlin. 

In a press release, head coach Jon Norfolk said: “The track squad enters 2024 with strong momentum from the previous season which saw nine world and 12 European medals won, and I’m excited to see what a good block of winter training produces out in Apeldoorn."

Norfolk added: “There is real strength and depth in our current track squad, and the European championships will provide good competition experience as well as an opportunity for riders to showcase their abilities as we head towards Olympic selection.” 

The European Championships will be held from 10-14 January at the Omnisport velodrome in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands. 

The 23-rider GBCT squad is listed below. 

Women’s endurance 

Meg Barker 
Elinor Barker  
Neah Evans 
Josie Knight 
Sophie Lewis 
Anna Morris 
Jess Roberts 

Men’s endurance

Dan Bigham 
Ethan Hayter 
Will Perrett 
Mark Stewart 
Charlie Tanfield 
Will Tidball 
Ollie Wood 
Ethan Vernon 

Women’s sprint 

Sophie Capewell 
Emma Finucane 
Katy Marchant 
Lowri Thomas 

Men’s sprint

Jack Carlin  
Ali Fielding 
Joe Truman 
Hamish Turnbull 

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