Road race world champion Mark Cavendish has said he would like to be part of the British team pursuit squad for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, Brazil.
Speaking to Sky Sports News this morning he said: “I watched the guys last night and saw the team spirit and how they’ve grown as a unit and I said, ‘I want to be a part of that again,’”
“The road race won’t suit me in 2016. It’s not going to be a flat race around Rio, so I’d really like to push for a 2016 spot on the track.”
Cavendish has been in the London velodrome working as a pundit with the BBC. He was world champion in the madison in 2005 and 2008, but still hasn’t won an Olympic medal. The most high profile British rider not to do so.
As part of the British Cycling academy when he turned 18, Cavendish is no stranger to track racing. He rode as part of a team pursuit squad in world cups alongside Ed Clancy and Geraint Thomas.
“The training with track cycling is very hard. It’s very institutionalised with drills, drills, drills. But that’s what you’ve got to do in most sports to win Olympic gold,” he said. “I’ve spoken with the coaches about it. I’d love to be part of a team and the team pursuit.”
The UCI’s track program has shifted dates for this coming winter. The track world championships are now February, thus avoiding any major clashes with the classics season on the road, meaning Cavendish could race track in the winter before a road season.