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Aussies ready for 2019 UCI Track World Championships

26 February 2019

CYCLING: The Australian Cycling Team has completed its penultimate training session in Pruszkow, Poland ahead of the 2019 UCI Track World Championships which will be held from 27 February to 3 March 2019.

Team pursuit world record holders Leigh Howard (VIC), Kelland O’Brien (VIC), Alexander Porter (SA) and Samuel Welsford (WA), plus debutant Cameron Scott (NSW) and nine-time world champion Cameron Meyer (WA) will hit the training track on Tuesday for one last hit out ahead of the Championships which opens with the team pursuit on Wednesday afternoon.  

Back on the World Championship stage after Australia strategically skipped the 2018 World Championships in favour of the Commonwealth Games, Welsford is champing at the bit to claim a third team pursuit rainbow jersey in four years.

“We had the rainbows in 2017, so I’m pretty confident I can say on behalf of the boys that we want to go and get those back,” Welsford said.

“Team pursuit times are getting so fast now, a lot of teams are getting down to that low (three minutes) 50 (second) barrier. I think we’re at a good level at the moment and in good form so we can produce a really good time that could go close to that world record.”

2018 Commonwealth Games champions Ashlee Ankudinoff (NSW), Amy Cure (TAS), Annette Edmondson (SA) and Alexandra Manly (SA), plus Georgia Baker (TAS) have wrapped up their on-track preparations as they target the top step of the women's team pursuit podium. 

In ominous words for the rest of the competition, dual 2015 world champion Edmondson has revealed she has rediscovered her love of track cycling since returning to the Australian Cycling Team to focus on the track.

“I found that spark again, a spark I haven't had for a long time and I'm really excited to be back," said Edmondson. “It’s awesome (to be back), there aren’t many opportunities to represent your country at the World Championships."

Reigning world champion Matthew Glaetzer (SA) headlines the men’s sprint quartet with Patrick Constable (SA) and Nathan Hart (ACT), with nineteen-year-old Podium Potential Academy member Matthew Richardson (WA) set to make his elite World Championship debut.

Glaetzer is aiming to take his sensational early season form into the World Championships after a near-perfect start to the 2018/19 World Cups in which he powered to three gold and one silver across the first four sprint competitions. 

“I haven’t had a better season, the World Cups were almost flawless, except for the last (fourth round) one which took its toll,” Glaetzer said.

“There is some strong competition, it's tough. Yes, I won three out of four, but it was very close all the way through.”

Stephanie Morton (SA) and Kaarle McCulloch (NSW) comprise the women’s sprint selections, with the pair setting a new Australian record in the team sprint last November, while Morton netted eight medals including four gold across four rounds of the World Cup season.

Morton knows she will take career-best form into this week’s World Championships and as she strives to find the top step of the Worlds sprint podium after two straight silver medals, she is fully aware she will be a marked rider in Poland. 

“I am certainly not the underdog anymore that’s for sure,” Morton admitted.

“I think there’s the potential to start letting those thoughts creep in like ‘I’ve got to back up like last year’ or ‘I’ve got to do better than last year’ but you just can’t put that pressure on yourself."

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In Australia via FOXSPORTS Australia. VIEW GUIDE 

SCHEDULE

The Championships run 27 February to 3 March 2019. VISIT WEBSITE

  •          Wednesday 27 February: W - Team Pursuit Qualifying; M - Team Pursuit Qualifying; W - Scratch 10 km; W - Team Sprint; M - Team Sprint
  •          Thursday 28 February: W - Sprint Flying 200m & rounds; M - Team Pursuit; M -  Scratch 15 km; M - Keirin; W - Team Pursuit
  •          Friday 1 March: M - Points race 40 km; M -  Kilometre Time Trial.; M - Individual Pursuit; W - Omnium; W - Sprint
  •          Saturday 2 March: M - Sprint Flying 200m & rounds; W - 500m Time Trial; W -  Madison 30 km; W - Individual pursuit; M - Omnium
  •          Sunday 3 March: W - Points race 25 km; M -  Madison 50 km; W - Keirin; M - Sprint

Cycling Australia

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