Ethan Hayter, Connor Swift, Alice Barnes and Dame Laura Kenny are just some of the riders that will be representing Team England at this year's Commonwealth Games.
A total of 35 riders have made the selection, and events will kick off in Birmingham on July 28.
The home games promise to bring enthusiastic supporters - something Lotto-Soudal's Josie Knight said would be particularly welcome after the Tokyo Olympics.
“Out in Tokyo, at the Olympics, no friends and family could come out,” Knight told Cycling Weekly, “with this obviously being in the UK they will all be there for me. For them to be able to come and watch me race for England at the Commonwealth Games is such a big deal,” she added.
Hayter and Kenny will be two of the most prolific names on the start list. The 2021 season saw some notable results for Hayter, including finishing 2nd overall at the Tour of Britain and winning the points classification.
Hayer's superb form has continued into 2022, the 23-year-old came 2nd overall in the points classification at the Critérium du Dauphiné and may yet make the Ineos Grenadiers Tour de France selection ahead of the games.
EF Education-TIBCO-SVB rider, Abi Smith, has also made the cut for the road team. One of the country’s most promising youngsters, the 19-year-old won the women’s Junior National Road Series in 2019 in her first year as a junior. Despite the 2020 season being interrupted by the pandemic, Smith still found time to win both the junior National Hill Climb Championship and the junior National 10 mile Championship.
“It will be such an honour to pull on the jersey. I remember drawing myself aged 10 in a Team England skinsuit, so this is really really special to be there,” said Smith on her selection.
“Being selected for the Junior Worlds in Harrogate was amazing. This is my 2nd big major championship really and my 1st as an elite rider so this is very very special. The fact it's at home is something else and the crowds will be amazing,” she told Cycling Weekly.
“Hearing the crowds and seeing friends and family on the roadside is so important. Particularly if you’re in a time trial. Just hearing people shout your name spurs you on, you don’t get that in other countries in the same way. I’m so grateful for the opportunity of being there,” Smith beamed.
On the track, Kenny, Knight and Ribble Weldtite's Charlie Tanfield will be looking to impress in their different events and secure medals.
Like Smith, Knight was quick to point out the advantage of a packed out crowd at a major event, “you almost don’t feel your legs when they’re cheering you on. I cannot wait to get out on that velodrome and race next month,” Knight said.
“It’s a tricky balance preparing for this as I ride for Lotto Soudal on the road. I’ve got some stage races coming up that I need to prepare for like the Tour of Switzerland. Cycling up some massive mountains might not be the best prep for track riding but I know my coaches will make it work and there’s lots of track time coming up ahead of the games,” Knight added.
Team England riders
· Blaine Ridge-Davis – Manchester (from London)
· Charlie Tanfield – Stockport, Manchester (from North Yorkshire)
· Dame Laura Kenny – Cheshire (from Harlow)
· Ethan Vernon – Macclesfield, Cheshire (from Bedford)
· Grace Lister – Shrewsbury, Shropshire
· Hayden Norris – Stafford
· Joe Truman – Manchester (from Hampshire)
· Josie Knight – Macclesfield, Cheshire (from Buckinghamshire)
· Lauren Bate – Stockport, Manchester (from St Helens)
· Maddie Leech – Manchester (from Huddersfield)
· Milly Tanner – Stockport, Manchester (from Exeter)
· Oliver Wood – Stockport, Manchester (from Wakefield)
· Ryan Owens – Manchester (from Milton Keynes)
· Sophie Capewell – Cheadle, Manchester (from Burton On Trent)
· Sophie Lewis – Cheadle, Manchester (from Peterborough)
· Hamish Turnbull – Manchester (from Northumberland)
Track cycling (Para):
· Sophie Unwin – Honiton, Devon (from Salisbury)
· Georgia Holt, Pilot for Sophie – Oldham, Manchester (from Nottingham)
· Steve Bate MBE – Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire
· Chris Latham, Pilot for Steve – Comberbach, Cheshire (from Bolton)
· Abi Smith – York, North Yorkshire
· Alice Barnes – Stockport, Cheshire (from Oxford)
· Anna Henderson, Buckinghamshire
· Ben Turner – Doncaster, Yorkshire
· Connor Swift – Doncaster, Yorkshire
· Dan Bigham – Stone, Staffordshire (from Newcastle)
· Ethan Hayter – Manchester (from London)
· Fred Wright – Cheadle, Cheshire (from London)
· Jake Stewart – Birch Vale, Derbyshire (from Coventry)
· Josie Nelson – Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire (from Lichfield)
· Joss Lowden – Andorra (from Lewes, East Sussex)
· Matt Walls – Oldham, Lancashire (from Oldham)
· Evie Richards – Malvern, Worcestershire
· Harry Birchill – Newton Abbot, Devon (from Torquay)
· Joseph Blackmore – Bexleyheath, Kent (from Sidcup)
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Tom is a Digital News and Features Writer at Cycling Weekly.
Before joining the Cycling Weekly team, he worked at Oxford Brookes University, most recently in the Internal Communications team. An avid cycling follower with a keen interest in racing, he previously featured on cycling blog, Casquettes and Bidons.
Fabio Jakobsen sprints to victory on stage two of the Tour de France
Jakobsen beats Wout Van Aert and Mads Pedersen to secure the win for Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl
By Tom Thewlis • Published
Alejandro Valverde involved in hit and run incident during training in Spain
Movistar confirm rider suffered no fractures or other injuries
By Tom Thewlis • Published
How do the Tour de France 2022 time trials work?
The race against the clock is a highlight of the games, but what are the rules?
By Ryan Dabbs • Published
'It's just fast all day': Ethan Hayter on his first WorldTour stage race
The British time trial champion helped his team leaders at Paris-Nice, but also impressed on the time trial
By Adam Becket • Published
Ethan and Leo Hayter double up on national time trial gold - but Covid keeps family at home
Ethan scored yet another victory as Leo showcased his promise
By Chris Marshall-Bell • Published
Marianne Vos dominates to win Simac Ladies Tour prologue
The Dutch superstar puts four seconds into her rivals at the start of the six-day race
By Owen Rogers • Published
Laura Kenny finishes sixth in 'nightmare' Omnium
The Brit says it was already 'job done' after winning the Madison earlier in the week
By Jonny Long • Published
'I've never wanted to win a race so badly in all my life': Laura Kenny and Katie Archibald react to Tokyo 2020 Madison gold
The gold medal for Kenny makes her the most successful female British athlete in the Olympics
By Tim Bonville-Ginn • Published
Laura Kenny and Katie Archibald crush the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Madison to take gold
A huge performance by the Brits in a chaotic race, as the Madison returns to the Olympics
By Alex Ballinger • Published
Tokyo 2020 Olympics: Everything you need to know about Laura Kenny
The rider has more gold medals in the Olympics than any other female British athlete
By Tim Bonville-Ginn • Published