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Ryan Owens

Track sprint

Based
Manchester

From
Aspley Guise, Bedfordshire

Date of birth
29/09/1995

Team

Having given up university studies to concentrate on his cycling career and attempt to win a place on the Great Britain team for the 2020 Olympic Games, Ryan Owens’ rapid progress was recognised in June 2016 when he was selected as a reserve for the Rio Olympics.

The sprinter from Bedfordshire, 20-years-old at the time the Olympics squad was announced, was named as a reserve to the sprint squad comprising Jason Kenny, Philip Hindes and Callum Skinner.

That capped a meteoric rise for Owens, whose main successes to that point had include a podium at the British National Track Championships and multiple gold medals in the BUCS University National Track Championships, and he responded quickly by helping Great Britain win team sprint gold in the UEC Under-23 European Track Championships.

Career in numbers

1

Total UEC European Track Championships medals

Biography

Born into a keen cycling family - his father and grandfather having both ridden competitively - Owens started the sport at the age of 11 and was racing by the time he had reached 16.

His first national-level achievement was a second place in the time trial at the 2011 National Junior Track Championships in the under-16 category although a calf injury forced the youngster to miss the 2012 season as he was sidelined for 11 months.

Fully fit once more, it was obvious that the rider’s future lay in sprint events and Owens’ progress continued in 2013 with a bronze medal in the keirin at the National Junior Track Championships and a fourth place in the team sprint in the senior British National Track Championships.

Having started at Loughborough University in September 2014, Owens won bronze in the team sprint at the British National Track Championships in 2014 with Peter Mitchell and Thomas Scammell.

Owens then went on to dominate the BUCS University National track championships at the National Cycling Centre, Manchester in May 2015, winning three golds.

Owens set a new BUCS University record for the 200-metre time trial, with 10.653, on his way to gold in the sprint competition; won the kilo in 1:05.658 and led Loughborough to gold in the team sprint in a new record time of 49.758.

At this stage of his career, Owens was driving nearly 600 miles every week between Lee Valley VeloPark in London and the Derby Velodrome to train.

But on the back of his improving performances, Owens was handed a trial by the Great Britain Cycling Team in September 2015, winning a place on the Senior Academy and moving to Manchester full-time to pursue his dream of one day winning an Olympic gold medal.

He also competed in the 2015 National Track Championships, finishing fifth in the team sprint and seventh in the keirin.

Following his impressive progress and selection as a reserve to the Rio Olympic Games team sprint squad, Owens justified the faith shown in him in Montichiari, Italy, in July at the UEC Junior and Under-23  Track European Championships. Teamed with Joe Truman and Jack Carlin, Owens helped the British under-23 team win qualification by over half a second, posting a time of 43.930. In the gold medal ride against the Czech Republic, Great Britain once more broke 44 seconds with a winning margin of, again, over half a second.

With senior sprint colleagues taking a post-Olympics break, the trio of Carlin, Owens and Truman received senior Great Britain Cycling Team call-ups for the first time.

At the UEC European Track Championships, the young riders took silver in the team sprint, before going one better in back-to-back world cups.

They won gold in the 2016/17 UCI Track Cycling World Cup opening round in Glasgow before repeating the trick one week later in Apeldoorn, Netherlands.

Those performances earned Owens his first world championships selection, named in the Great Britain Cycling Team squad for the 2017 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Hong Kong.

Once again selected alongside Carlin and Truman, Owens qualified third fastest in the team sprint, before missing out on a medal ride by less than two-hundredths of a second.

Owens then turned his hand to the individual sprint, finishing fourth at this maiden world championships.

Alongside Carlin and Truman once more, Owens successfully defended his under-23 team sprint title at the 2017 UEC Junior and Under-23 Track European Championships in Anadia, Portugal before winning bronze in the same event at the first round of the 2017/17 Tissot UCI Track Cycling World Cup in Pruszkow, Poland.

GREAT BRITAIN CYCLING TEAM KIT

Great Britain Cycling Team kit

Great Britain Cycling Team's Ryan Owens, with team sprint teammates Jack Carlin (L) and Joe Truman (R)
Great Britain Cycling Team's Ryan Owens

Palmarès

2017
Tissot UCI Track Cycling World Cup, Pruszkow (Poland) Team sprint Bronze
UEC Junior and Under-23 Track European Championships, Anadia (Portugal) Team sprint Gold
2016
UCI Track Cycling World Cup, Apeldoorn (Netherlands) Team sprint Gold
UCI Track Cycling World Cup, Glasgow (UK) Team sprint Gold
UEC European Track Championships, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (France) Team sprint Silver
UEC Junior and Under-23 Track European Championships, Montichiari (Italy) Team sprint Gold