International Cycling

Wiggins returns for Britain at track cycling worlds

2016-03-01 14:01
Bradley Wiggins (AFP)

London - Four-time Olympic champion Bradley Wiggins will race at his first Track Cycling World Championships since 2008 when the worlds start Wednesday in London.

Wiggins is one of the standout names competing at the five-day event at Lee Valley VeloPark, which hosted the 2012 Olympic cycling program.

The men will compete in 10 events with the women riding in nine - the Madison being the only event remaining that's only for men - in the final competition of the track cycling season.

The track program at the 2016 Olympics in Rio gets underway on Aug. 11 and London represents for some a final chance to earn selection for the Games in Brazil.

Wiggins won the time trial at the 2012 Olympics in London, 10 days after capturing the Tour de France.

The Team Wiggins rider is aiming to compete at his fifth Olympics where he would become the most-decorated British Olympian in history if he wins a medal. Wiggins, co-most decorated with Chris Hoy at seven, is not guaranteed a place on the Britain team with London determining whether he goes to Rio.

Wiggins will race in the team pursuit and team up with Mark Cavendish in the non-Olympic Madison; the pair won the world title in 2008. Cavendish is aiming to compete in the omnium in Brazil.

Gregory Bauge races for his ninth world title in the sprint events. The French cyclist won double gold last year in Paris and faces a challenge from teammate Francois Pervis and Australian Matthew Glaezter.

The team sprints will be contested on opening day. France is defending champion but Germany has been strong this season with the British men improving.

Bauge wants to make up for the team being stripped of gold in 2011 when he was suspended for missed doping tests and his results wiped out.

"In the team sprint I want to give my best because I do not forget that I was responsible for the loss of a title in 2011," he said in comments on DirectVelo. "I want to help my team to be crowned world champion."

In the women's event, China is the team to beat after dominating in recent years but Germany and Australia will challenge with Anna Meares looking to add to her 11 titles at her 13th worlds.

The Australian returns to the scene of her Olympic glory where she defeated home favourite Victoria Pendleton - now a jockey - in the sprint.

The men's scratch race will be decided Wednesday. Lucas Liss is defending champion with Stephen Hall strong this season.

Britain's Katie Archibald should have been favourite for the individual pursuit but a motorcycle crash has put her out. Jennifer Valente and Elise Delzenne are contenders.

Read more on:    bradley wiggins  |  cycling


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