World Track Championships Team Announced
9 February 2015
CYCLING: The National Track Team for the 2015 UCI World Track Championships in Paris has been announced.
The twenty-rider team, which features five debutants, is highlighted by reigning world champions Alexander Edmondson (SA) and Amy Cure (TAS), ten-time world champion Anna Meares (SA) and three-time world champions Jack Bobridge (SA) and Glenn O'Shea (SA).
At the 2014 UCI Track World Championships in Colombia, the Australian team claimed three world titles (women's points, men's individual and team pursuit) in an eight-medal haul to finish equal first on the medal tally (with Germany).
Reigning Olympic champion Anna Meares (SA) will line up for a twelfth World Championships, a span which has netted ten world titles and 22 career medals. Meares requires just one more rainbow jersey to become the most successful female track cyclist in history, currently sharing the lead on ten with France’s own Felicia Ballanger.
2012 world champion Matthew Glaetzer (SA) leads the men's sprint selections, with the 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medallist fresh from a record breaking National Championships which saw him post the fastest Flying 200m on Australian soil in history.
Shane Perkins (VIC) receives his ninth selection, with the 2011 and 2012 world champion to be joined by three debutants in newly crowned keirin national champion Jacob Schmid (VIC), and 2014 Commonwealth Games representatives Peter Lewis (NSW) and Nathan Hart (ACT).
The women's sprint team is rounded out by 2014 Commonwealth Games sprint gold medallist Steph Morton (SA) and three-time team sprint world champion Kaarle McCulloch (NSW) who makes a welcome return to the team after 24 months battling with injury.
A seven-member men's endurance team is highlighted by dual reigning world champion Alexander Edmondson (SA), who isset to defend his individual and team pursuit crowns.
All five members of Australia's 2014 team pursuit world champion line up will head to Paris including Glenn O’Shea (SA), Luke Davison (SA), Mitchell Mulhern (QLD) and Miles Scotson (SA).
2010 and 2011 team pursuit world champion Jack Bobridge (SA) returns after a three-year absence from the World Championships to further bolster Australia's pursuiting stocks. Bobridge, world record holder in the individual pursuit, will line up in the team and individual pursuit, and will partner O'Shea in the Madison.
Scott LAW (NSW) will make his National team debut, with the Sydney cyclist claiming silver and gold during the 2014/15 UCI Track World Cup series, his first international season of racing in four years.
Reigning points race world champion and triple 2014 medallist Amy Cure (TAS) will headline a five-member women’s endurance squad which also includes seven-time World Championship medallist Annette Edmondson (SA).
They are joined by four-time World Championship medallist Melissa Hoskins (WA) who broke through for her maiden individual national title in the points race in Melbourne last week, plus 2010 team pursuit world champion Ashlee Ankudinoff (NSW).
The quartet broke the Australian team pursuit record at a staged attempt in Melbourne one week ago and will be looking to end Great Britain's four year reign in the event.
Rebecca Wiasak (ACT) is set to make her debut, with the Canberran having contested six straight World Cups over the past two years, the only Australian to do so.
Kevin Tabotta - National Performance Director, High Performance Unit - Cycling Australia
"It's been exciting to watch the competition for spots leading into the final selection for this Australian team," said Tabotta. "It demonstrates the great depth and quality of talent in our team for Paris, and gives encouraging signs for the future of Australian track cycling."
"As a team, our ambitions are lofty for the Worlds - and pre-competition performance indicators are very encouraging as we head Tuesday to Paris.
"Sprinters Peter Lewis and Matthew Glaetzer are recovering well from some bumps and bruises sustained in a heavy fall during the keirin at the National Championships last week, but they are both tough characters on a mission into Paris, and we expect them to be at full fitness well before race day.
The Championships signify the halfway mark of qualification for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, with just a handful of events available for aspiring athletes.
"This team represents the core of the athlete pool vying for the limited spots available for the Rio Olympics team in 2016," said Tabotta. "After these Worlds, there will be just three World Cups and one World Championships for all athletes to qualify and stake a claim for selection.
"Since October 2014, we have been collecting points as a Nation and we are tracking well across all ten Olympic track events, but the competition for nations to qualify is intense and so its important we perform well here in Paris."