The German selectors named their three riders for the sprint competition at the London Olympics last week, missing out Robert Forstemann.
The selectors have unsurprisingly made their decision on the strength of the team sprint, naming Rene Enders, Maximillian Levy and Stefan Nimke in their squad. As current world record holders the trio will be favourites for the title.
“We’ve thought long and hard and finally decided that this was our most promising trio,” said their head coach Detlef Uibel. The German trio won the team sprint at the London world cup but, like Great Britain, were relegated at the world championships for changing outside of the specified zone.
The move leaves out Robert Forstemann, the sprinter with the massive thighs. Forstemann qualified second fastest in the sprint competition at the track world championships in Melbourne, and only lost to Chris Hoy in the quarter finals. He is arguably the nation’s best sprinter.
Enders or Levy are likely to ride the sprint instead. Enders qualified 16th fastest in Melbourne and was then beaten in the first round of match sprinting by Frenchman Mickael Bourgain. Levy didn’t ride.
Losing Forstemann is another blow for the sprint competition at the Olympics that will suffer from the bizarre ‘one rider per country’ rule brought in by the sports governing body, the Unione Cyclist International (UCI) in a knee-jerk reaction to Great Britain’s dominance in Beijing.
There are realistically now only two winners of the sprint competition in London: Gregory Bauge of France, the three time world champion, and the British sprinter that is selected – either Sir Chris Hoy or Jason Kenny. Shane Perkins of Australia is an outside bet, but has never truly challenged in the sprint, and will do better in the kern.
British Cycling is set to make their decision on who will ride the men’s sprint on June 13. Sam Webster was recently left out of the New Zealand squad.