Great Britain’s Joanna Rowsell is enjoying the chase to regain the team pursuit world crown after losing the title in Paris in February.
The 26-year-old from Sutton responded defiantly back in February, telling gold-medallists Australia to “enjoy it while it lasts”, after being beaten by almost three seconds at the Vélodrome de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines.
Australia’s Annette Edmondson, Ashlee Ankudinoff, Amy Cure and Melissa Hoskins set a new world record of 4:13.683 for the 4000 metres, a lofty benchmark for Rowsell, Katie Archibald, Laura Trott and Elinor Barker who stopped the clock at 4:16.606.
A shock to British fans, the Paris result neither surprised nor deterred Rowsell and her team-mates.
"This year it wasn't so much of a wake-up call. We all knew how good the Aussies were,” Rowsell told Press Association Sport.
"I don't think any of us went into those world championships complacent or thinking we were going to walk away with it at all.”
The result in Paris ended a four-year run of world titles for the Great Britain Cycling Team in a discipline that was beginning to be regarded as a ‘banker’ for the Brits. But Rowsell confirmed that such thoughts were never part of her or her team’s pre-race mental makeup.
“I think other people can get quite complacent,” she said.
“Media, members of the public can often hang that medal around our necks and say 'oh, that's a guaranteed gold medal in women's team pursuit'.
"But it's not at all. We work really, really hard and we've had some really narrow victories over the years."
Rowsell will spend the summer on the road contesting the British Cycling Women’s Road Series with the Pearl Izumi Sports Tours International team before track competition beckons once again in the autumn and winter with first the UCI Track Cycling World Cup and the prospect of a home world championships in early 2016.
Fans with tickets for the 2016 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in London will be treated to a women’s team pursuit battle royale including Great Britain and Australia and Rowsell is enjoying the rare experience being on the chase in London and Rio beyond.
"It's a nice position to be in, to be chasing for a change, to have a team ahead of us to chase, a target time to go for, rather than us keep leading the way and keep trying to push the boundaries,” she said.
"Someone else has done that now so there's something very clear to aim for and I really like being in this position.”
Over 35,000 tickets for the 2016 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in London have now been sold, as fans rush to book their place at Britain’s premier international sporting event of 2016.
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