It’s now a race against time to get our track team fit for Rio. With just three silver medals from the World Championships last week, it’s going to need a turnaround in the next 18 months for us to stand any chance of Olympic glory.
We knew there would be a slump after London 2012 but the 14-year low suffered in Paris was still a shock. Jason Kenny’s first round eliminations from the sprint and the keirin were particular lows, not what you expect from the reigning Olympic champ.
Laura Trott was our strongest rider with two silvers, but there was disappointment for her when the women’s team pursuit squad were defeated; their first in four years.
Considering the broken bones, illness and lack of form, fortunes can only improve, but a second successive lacklustre Worlds is another blow for morale, which is perhaps more worrying.
Cue Sir Bradley Wiggins. BC boss Shane Sutton admits that his team needs “an iconic leader” and Wiggo fits the bill. On the evidence of last year’s Commonwealth Games he still has the speed, but just as importantly his presence could provide the missing spark.
We too can play our part by supporting our riders at the 2016 Worlds at the London Velodrome in the last big showdown before Rio. Tickets go on sale at the end of March.
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly
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