Owain Doull believes he’s learning from the best as he aims for a successful UCI Track World Cup meet in Manchester this weekend.
The Welshman is hoping the British squad can repeat their team pursuit triumph after striking gold at the European Championships in Apeldoorn earlier this month.
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Doull rode with Olympic champions Ed Clancy and Steven Burke, as well as Andy Tennant, and is hoping to be part of the same quartet at the National Cycling Centre.
The 20-year-old is in his first year with the senior squad but feels very much part of the team and is enjoying learning from some of Britain’s most successful track cyclists.
“They offer a wealth of experience for me,” said Doull.
“Sometimes you’re in training and think of it as normal and other occasions you realise you’re actually competing and training with guys like Ed, who is probably the best team pursuiter in the world. It’s pretty amazing.
“It’s a good team atmosphere and everyone gets on well. It’s my first year with the senior squad and everyone’s been very welcoming. It’s very much one team.”
Doull regards a win in the team pursuit as the only outcome that would constitute a successful weekend for Britain’s endurance riders due to the form shown in the Netherlands.
The points and scratch races are also lined up but the former Maindy Flyer has his focus firmly on the pursuit.
“First and foremost it’s the team pursuit we’re targeting, especially with the team we’ve got – that’s what we’ve been training for,” added Doull.
“We’ve got Burkey and Ed who are Olympic champions and then Tennant who’s been a World Champion. To get into the team would be great and a win is the goal on our home track.”
The young rider, who is now based in Manchester after moving from Cardiff as part of the Academy set up, is also confident the team can use their home advantage to full effect.
“I think it’s going to be quite a big advantage,” said Doull.
“I did Glasgow last year and I was in shock at the amount of noise the crowd was making, so that was pretty special to do the World Cup there and I think Manchester will be another step up.
“I’ve also been training on this track for a fair few years now and you get to know everything inside out.
“When you go away you spend a few days getting used to the tracks as they’re all different but with Manchester it’s one we all know.”