Monthly Archives: September 2012

James claims British keirin title

Sprinter Becky James won her fourth title in five days at the

British Cycling National Track Championships 

as she defended her keirin crown.

A dominant performance from the 20-year-old saw her take another event to add to her

500m time trial,



team sprint 

titles in Manchester.

“I’m really chuffed,” she said. “I had in my head what I wanted to achieve and I think it went better than expected.

“The track nationals is a big event for me. It’s a great start to the season.”

The Welsh cyclist streaked clear with one and a half laps to go in the final to finish comfortably ahead of Victoria Williamson and Charlene Joiner who battled through a packed field to claim silver and bronze.


a silver medallist for Wales in the women’s sprint at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi,

was a reserve for the women’s team sprint event at London 2012 but did not make Great Britain’s final Olympic squad.

Meanwhile, David Daniell, Lewis Oliva and Peter Mitchell edged Bruce Croall, John Paul and Callum Skinner by 0.238 seconds to take the men’s team sprint title and Simon Yates secured victory in the omnium having finished as runner-up last year.

Emily Kay, Elinor Barker and Amy Roberts beat Lucy Garner, Corrine Hall and Harriet Owen in the women’s team pursuit final.

Lucy Garner and Harriet Owen retained their women’s madison title, while Jon Dibben and Sam Lowe finished first in the junior men’s madison.

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Pendleton seeks ‘more equality’

Victoria Pendleton has called for more gender equality in road cycling, and suggested British Cycling put an elite female into management.

Women attract

far less prize money and coverage,

a situation 32-year-old Pendleton says should be improved.

“It doesn’t seem fair when you put in the same amount of training and you don’t get the same opportunities,” the double Olympic champion told BBC Sport.

She added “a female brain” is sometimes needed to get the best out of women.

The difference in resources between the sexes has been hotly debated, and fellow British riders Lizzie Armitstead –

who won silver in the women’s road race at London 2012

– and Emma Pooley

have both accused the International Cycling Union (UCI) of treating female cyclists differently.

GB women at London 2012

Team Pursuit:

Gold (Dani King, Laura Trott and Joanna Rowsell)


Gold (Laura Trott)


Gold (Victoria Pendleton)


Silver (Victoria Pendleton)

Road race:

Silver (Lizzie Armitstead)

Domestically, Team Sky do not run a female professional side, although their

Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins said he was willing to fund one for women’s cyclists, who he felt are “the forgotten ones”.

The UCI has, however,

unanimously approved a range of measures to improve the women’s sport,

which included the creation of a new tier of “hors categorie” road races for elite riders.

Pendleton, who won gold in the track sprint at Beijing 2008 and

in the keirin at London 2012

plus nine World Championship titles in her career, recently retired from the sport but hopes women can achieve more coverage.

Her comments come after an incredibly successful London 2012 for female British cyclists where Laura Trott won omnium gold as well as in the team sprint with Dani King and Joanna Rowsell.

Pendleton won silver in the sprint

along with her gold in the keirin, while Lizzie Armitstead came second in the road race.

She continued: “I think there are opportunities for girls to make a name for themselves. I do feel, however, on the road side of things, there could be more.

“The guys get a lot of exposure and a lot of coverage. It’s a real shame the women’s road side of things hasn’t been promoted.”

British Cycling and Team Sky boss Dave Brailsford talked about the “gender imbalance between the male and female side”

in the build-up to the recent Road World Championships and told BBC Sport: “I don’t think there is a simple answer but there’s an answer. We’ll be working at it and thinking about it and finalising soon.”

The 48-year-old did not reveal whether the “answer” would entail the introduction of an elite female into the management and coaching structure at British Cycling, an act that ex-track rider Pendleton thought would be of tremendous benefit as “women generally need a different approach”.

Armitstead crosses the line for silver

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GB’s Armitstead wins road race silver

She said: “If I could change one single thing in British cycling then it would be to put an elite female in a high-up role within the structure.

“Someone who had power, authority and experience all at the same time. That, in one single move, would be the most helpful.

“I do feel their [women’s] needs and requirements are sometimes overlooked. [To get the best out of] Myself, in particular, is very different to how you get the best out of [six-time Olympic gold medallist] Sir Chris Hoy.

“It does take a female brain to work that out. A woman is more likely to have a different emotional intelligence to recognise if someone is struggling.

“I felt that I had to become more male in my approach and my persona in order to survive, rather than the sport catering to me. A lot of girls in the sport feel like this, I feel.

“I would consider coaching but it’s not my time now to do it. I feel I haven’t had enough experience of coaching to step in and really make a difference at a high level.”

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Usada sets Armstrong report date

The long-awaited report into Lance Armstrong’s lifetime ban from cycling should be sent to the sport’s governing body, the UCI, by 15 October.

The UCI will then decide whether to ratify the decision to strip Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles.

Armstrong was stripped of the wins and given a lifetime ban by Usada after deciding not to challenge charges he had doped throughout his career.

The 41-year-old has always denied the allegations of doping.

The American said he had decided not to contest the charges because

he refused “to participate in a process that is so one-sided and unfair”


Usada’s Annie Skinner said her organisation was “in the process of finalising the written reasoned decision in its US Postal Services pro cycling doping case”.

She added: “We will provide the reasoned decision addressing the lifetime bans and disqualifications imposed to the UCI and World Anti-Doping Agency as provided for under the world rules. We expect it to be sent no later than 15 October.”

Cycling’s governing body, the International Cycling Union, is awaiting the report before deciding whether or not to confirm Armstrong’s ban.

UCI president Pat McQuaid admitted it was likely to be a case of rubberstamping Usada’s decision though.

“Unless the Usada’s decision and case file give serious reasons to do otherwise, the UCI has no intention to appeal to Court of Arbitration for Sport or not to recognise the Usada’s sanctions on Lance Armstrong,” he said.

“The UCI assumes that the decision and file will also detail the sanction the USADA may wish to enforce upon the riders who have provided testimony in exchange for reduced sanctions.”

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James seals British sprint title

Becky James has taken a grip on an event once dominated by Victoria Pendleton by retaining the British women’s sprint title.

The 20-year-old beat Victoria Williamson at the National Track Cycling Championships in Manchester.

Pendleton, women’s sprint Olympic gold medallist in 2008, took the national title every year from 2002 to 2010.

But James, from Abergavenny, won it last year when Pendleton decided to focus on the team sprint.

Victory in Manchester secured James her second title of this year’s national championship, as she

won the 500m time trial event

on Wednesday, in which she also beat Williamson.

She is due to take part in the team sprint with her sister Rachel on Saturday, before defending her British keirin title on Sunday.


a silver medallist for Wales in the women’s sprint at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi,

has been inspired by Pendleton, who won Olympic gold in the event in Beijing in 2008, and in the keirin in London before retiring in August.

With Britain’s London Olympic cyclists not taking part in Manchester, this year’s national championships have given promising hopefuls such as James and Williamson a chance to shine.

James had a difficult finish to 2011,

as she was struck down by food poisoning following a Track Cycling World Cup meeting in Kazakhstan last November.

She then suffered an Achilles injury the following month and had to have her appendix removed in January after returning from a World Cup meeting in Beijing.

But she fought back to win a silver medal with Williamson in the team sprint and bronzes in the individual sprint and keirin at the European Under-23 Championships in Portugal in July.

James was not part of Great Britain’s final Olympic squad, although she was reserve for the women’s team sprint event, for which Pendleton and Jess Varnish were selected.

Meanwhile, Matt Crampton claimed gold in the men’s keirin with a dramatic late run to beat rival Matt Rotherham to the line.

Mark Colbourne won his second title of the week with victory in the Paracycling individual pursuit, while Corinne Hall beat Charline Joiner and Hannah Barnes to take the women’s points race title.

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James takes British 500m TT title

Welsh cyclist Becky James won the British women’s 500m Time Trial at the National Track Championships in Manchester on Wednesday.

The 20-year-old from Abergavenny was last to go and recorded a time of 34.763 seconds, beating Victoria Williamson (35.749sec) into second.

Danielle Khan (36.04sec) was third, with James’ sister Rachel in fifth.

There was also joy for James’ Welsh compatriot Owain Doull after he became the men’s Individual Pursuit champion.

Doull had topped the times in qualification and rode down Jon Dibben in the final.

Paralympic gold medallist Mark Colbourne was forced to settle for silver in the Paracycling Time Trial, with visually impaired Sophie Thornhill, piloted by Megan Boyd, taking the win.

James will defend her Sprint title on Friday and then her Keirin crown on the last day of competition on Sunday.

The James sisters will also contest the Team Sprint in Manchester, with the finals of that event set for Saturday.

“This is the start of my season now,” James told British Cycling.

“The beginning of the season hasn’t been a very good start with appendicitis and an Achilles injury.

“So this is the beginning of my season and it is really good to go out and set a PB [personal best] when I’m still in a hard block of training.”

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