The first ever UCI Cycling eSports World Championships will take place next month, and British Cycling is fielding strong squads for the event.
Being held virtually on Zwift on December 8 and 9, the unique discipline will see men and women compete over the same 50km course on Zwift’s Watopia map.
Men’s and women’s world champions will then be crowned and awarded a both a physical and digital rainbow jersey.
British Cycling has now announced the two teams competing for the jerseys next month, with some real talent on display.
In the women’s race, Dame Sarah Storey will be joined by Elinor Barker, Megan Barker, Dani Christmas, with Jenny Holl completing the line-up.
For the elite men, Ed Clancy, Max Stedman, Andy Tennant and Robert Scott will be chasing the virtual victory.
Performance director for the Great Britain Cycling Team, Stephen Park said “Amongst the talented Great Britain Cycling Team line-up, we have reigning Olympic and Paralympic champions, including Elinor Barker, Ed Clancy and Dame Sarah Storey, all vying to add another rainbow jersey to their collection.
“Senior Academy riders Meg Barker and Jenny Holl will be keen to show what they’re capable of in this first year of their Paris 2024 cycle and I’m looking forward to seeing Andy Tennant compete once more in Great Britain colours.
“It’s good to also be able to extend this opportunity to riders who have excelled on the online platforms this year, with Dani Christmas, Max Stedman and Rob Scott all making selection.”
National federations will be putting up teams to compete on the Watopia Figure Eight Reverse course on Zwift, which finishes on the Hilly KOM.
The course is 50km long with an elevation of 483km, with a field of 100 riders per race.
Perhaps most importantly, Zwift’s powerups will be available to the riders, adding another dimension to the discipline.
The UCI and Zwift may also invite individual riders to compete as wildcards.
Park said: “In what has been a tumultuous year, indoor cycling has provided many cycling enthusiasts, including members of the Great Britain Cycling Team, with an outlet to keep themselves physically and mentally healthy, as well as allowing racing in some form to continue during those more difficult months in the early lockdown period.
“The uptake for British Cycling’s own Zwift Cycling Series has been brilliant to see, and the forthcoming World Championships will do nothing but boost the popularity further.”
Great Britain Cycling Team for the 2020 UCI Cycling Esports World Championships
Dame Sarah Storey