Cyclists named for London dress rehearsal

2 years ago, 31 January 2012 (AEST)

Cycling Australia has announced the riders selected in the Cyclones team to contest the final round of the UCI Track World Cup Series being staged in London from 16 to 18 February.

"This will be our only opportunity to race on the Olympic velodrome and familiarise both athletes and staff with the environment ahead of the Games. The World Cup will help sharpen our team focus, knowing that there is just over 180 days to go before first event of the Olympic track program," said Cycling Australia's National Performance Director, Kevin Tabotta. "It will also give us an idea of where the rest of the world is in terms of preparation for the upcoming World Championships in Melbourne in April."

Tabotta says tough decisions have had to be made by selectors and communicated to the athletes who have not been selected for the London world cup round.

"We are on target to qualify the maximum track places for the Games so the focus now it to ensure we are in the best possible position to win medals in London. That means setting targets for teams and individuals and making sure they know what is expected of them as we come close to nominating teams for the worlds and the Olympic Games."

The Cyclones head to the London World Cup Round with an impressive line up of world champions including sprint and keirin champion Anna Meares along with her team sprint world champion partner Kaarle McCulloch. In the men's sprint events Shane Perkins sports the rainbow stripes of keirin world champion.

Former world champions Ashlee Ankudinoff and Sarah Kent have missed selection. Ankudinoff and Kent were among six members of the women's track endurance squad who were vying for four spots on the London World Cup team.

Competition had been extremely tight and the selection process ended with the individual pursuit at last week's track nationals, where Annette Edmondson sealed her berth by breaking the Australian all-comers' record twice.

Melissa Hoskins and Amy Cure made the cut along with Josie Tomic, who combined with Ankudinoff and Kent to win the 2010 team pursuit world title.

Selectors have named six track endurance men including Jack Bobridge, Rohan Dennis, Luke Durbridge and Michael Hepburn, who are the reigning team pursuit world champions while Bobridge also has the 2011 individual pursuit world tile to his name. 2011 junior world champion, Alex Edmondson and 2012 Omnium national champion Glenn O'Shea are also in the mix for a seat on the plane but only five of the six will be heading to London.

Beijing Olympian Dan Ellis and Jason Niblett, who rode in the event at last year's world titles, did not make selection.

Another notable omission was Michael Freiberg, the reigning omnium world champion.

The other member of the team is former junior world champion Matthew Glaetzer, who rode an exceptional race on Sunday to win the Australian keirin title.

The four round World Cup series kicked off in Astana last November before heading to Colombia in December and China earlier this month. The London round is also the official 'London Prepares' track cycling test event for the London Olympic Games being staged on the Olympic velodrome.

After the World Cup Series the world's best cyclists will head to Melbourne to contest the 2012 UCI Track World Championships . The Australian Cyclones for the world championships will be named on 14 March.

The team for the London UCI World Cup round is listed below:

Cyclones Australian Team:

    Amy CURE (Penguin, TAS 31.12.1992)
    Annette EDMONDSON (Stirling SA, 12.12.1991)
    Melissa HOSKINS (Lesmurdie WA, 24.02.1991)
    Kaarle MCCULLOCH (Gymea Bay, NSW 20.01.1988)
    Anna MEARES (West Richmond, SA [formerly QLD] 21.09.1983)
    Josephine TOMIC (Perth WA, 09.06.1989)

    Alex BIRD (Flynn, ACT 06.03.1985)
    Jack BOBRIDGE (Evaston Park SA, 13.07.1989) *
    Rohan DENNIS (Vale Park, SA 28.05.1990) *
    Luke DURBRIDGE (Bassendean, WA 09.04.1991) *
    Alexander EDMONDSON (Stirling, SA 22.12.1993) *
    Matthew GLAETZER (Adelaide SA, 24.08.1992)
    Michael HEPBURN (Brookfield, QLD 17.08.1991) *
    Glenn O'SHEA (Ridleyton, SA [formerly VIC] 14.06.1989) *
    Shane PERKINS (Clayton South, VIC 31.12.1986)
    Scott SUNDERLAND (Hillarys WA 16.03.1988)

 (* Please note six men's track endurance riders are listed but this will be cut to five who will travel to London for the World Cup)

Cycling Australia and AAP