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Sir Chris Hoy doesn’t foresee any wholesale alterations in his training or preparation in between now and the Olympic Games after the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Melbourne.
The Hisense Arena brought mixed fortunes for Hoy, finishing with a bronze in the individual sprint after being ousted by teammate Jason Kenny in the semi-final as the battle for the one Olympic place on offer for Great Britain in the event continued.
The Scotsman reacted with gold in the keirin on the final day of competition, winning the final from a seemingly impossible position. The 36-year-old, who reiterated his desire to defend all three of the gold medals he won in Beijing, will draw on his experience to fine tune his form before August and paid particular reference to Great Britain performance manager Shane Sutton.
“It’s not about making mistakes it's about learning from them, using past years to learn from things that have gone right and gone wrong. [Also] having confidence that I’m not far away from my best and it’s going to take that last bit of motivation, this is the light at the end of the tunnel and it’s an exciting opportunity,” Hoy said.
“The coaches are there and we have all these people in the background who measure figures, facts and data but it often comes down to someone like Shane Sutton.
“He’s just got the eye for it - he observes from the outside. He doesn’t really get involved that much all the time but he stands there and watches and he’s got the experience to then go to the coaches and ask pertinent questions which get them thinking and making the changes necessary between now and the Games.
“It’s very subtle things - the psychology behind it. It’s how you deal with yourself between now and the Games and there is often a temptation to keep your foot flat to the floor and keep pressing on in training but you have to back off a little bit. You can’t keep a peak going. It’s subtle things – not getting too caught up in the complexities, it’s keeping it simple as Shane says. There are three things you have got to do – work, rest and diet. Keep it simple, keep to the basics and give everything in every session.”
With no more competitive opportunities for riders to stake their claim, the decision will now lie with the selectors. If Hoy was to be handed the opportunity to defend all of his Olympic titles, it would present a demanding schedule, but one that is no more a challenge than that of London’s Track World Cup, in which he excelled with sprint and keirin gold.
“You look at London. It’s harder at world cups – it’s only three days and the intensity and density of the training and racing you do at world cups is far greater than it is at a word championships. Much earlier starts in the morning, much later finishing at night and I dealt with that fine in London.
“I think with me when my morale is good I can keep going and I can keep winning. You almost feel like you’re invincible.
But Hoy added: “It’s a risky strategy if you put one person in [for the kierin and sprint] and it doesn’t start so well - do you hedge your bets and go for one guy in each individual event?
“I’m happy to abide by the decision of the selectors. I have faith and trust in them that they will make the right decision and whether that in my favour or not I don’t know. I certainly believe as I showed in London that when I’m really on form I can beat anybody in the world in the sprint and anybody in the world in the keirin.”