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March to Rio continues for British team pursuit team. Cavendish might still get a spot on the team, pending final decision next week.

Photo: Simon Wilkinson/SWpix.com
05.08.2016 @ 09:32 Posted by Jesper Ralbjerg

Great Britain's team pursuit coach Heiko Salzwedel has confirmed reports that the men's team have broken the world record in training and that his order for the qualifying round of the Olympic Games, which starts on August 11, will be Ed Clancy, Owain Doull, Steven Burke and Bradley Wiggins. The current world record was set by Great Britain at the London Games four years ago, when they set a time of 3:51:659.

Mark Cavendish, who completes the endurance team and will ride in the Omnium, might still get a spot in the pursuit, according to Salzwedel, but a definitive decision will only be made during the Games.

 

"They're breaking the world record in training. That's no secret and a couple of people have seen it. How much faster, I don't want to elaborate," Salzwedel told Cyclingnews just before leaving for Rio on Wednesday.

 

If Wiggins and the team are to come away from Rio with the gold medals then they will need to see off the challenge from arch rivals Australia who inflicted defeat on home soil at the World Championships in London earlier this year, but Salzwedel insists that his team have moved on significantly since then.

 

"Since the World Championships the riders have really stood up. Someone like Ed Clancy, for example, we don't need to worry about his back injury anymore. He still has to do his extra exercises and has to pay attention but he's really moved on.

 

'Cavendish can do the numbers'

 

Cavendish will be on the hunt for gold in the Omnium but Salzwedel still believes he has an important role to play in the team pursuit, even though he will not ride the qualifying round.

 

"We'll see," the German said when asked if Cavendish would ride in the later rounds.

 

"He's certainly capable so we'll see if we include him. We'll make a call on the day because it's not something that you set in stone now. As for Mark, it's not a matter of numbers, it's more about technique. He's catching up with his lack of track miles but he's an exceptional rider, which he proved at the Tour. He also brings a lot of high morale and he can do the numbers."

 

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