Nicole Cooke

Nicole Cooke will kick off her Olympic year?s racing program by riding two one-day events in early March.

?We?ll almost certainly be doing a couple of British events during the team?s training camp,? the Halfords-Bikehut leader told Cycling Weekly.

For the 24-year-old, 2008 is an unusual year ?because I?m starting later in the season and concentrating on building up for the Olympics and World?s.?

?But that means I can?t wait to get back.?

?It doesn?t feel like an odd season, because so many things are different. It?s refreshing to have a change.?

Her first World Cup event will be the Alfredo Binda Classic on March 24. Italy has been bereft of women?s World Cup events since losing the Corsa Rosa a few years back, and ?this event will replace it.?

?It?s held in the Varese region, where there?s a huge cycling fan base, and I?ve won it twice, in 2005 and 2007 so it?ll be a good first international race for me.?

The knee injury that saw her out of the World?s last year is now ?completely cured. I?ve been doing some long training rides to check it out and there have been no problems.?