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Sutton: 2016 world champs will be a defining moment

Sutton: 2016 world champs will be a defining moment

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Great Britain Cycling Team technical director Shane Sutton says next year’s UCI Track Cycling World Championships in London will be a “defining moment” for the squad ahead of the Rio Olympics.

The last major track meeting ahead of the Games takes place at the Lee Valley VeloPark from 2-6 March 2016.

Sutton was speaking on the final day of the track world championships in Paris as Great Britain ended the event with three silver medals after a challenging five days.

"The worlds is a big defining moment for us next year," Sutton said.

"Very little changes after that (ahead of the Olympics), so you're going to get more of a gauge in 12 months than you will here."

Laura Trott, Katie Archibald, Joanna Rowsell and Elinor Barker won silver in the women’s team pursuit as Britain’s remarkable run of world titles - going back to 2011- was ended by Australia.

Ed Clancy, Steven Burke, Owain Doull and Andy Tennant added a second silver in the men’s team pursuit in a close-fought battle with New Zealand, a major improvement in the discipline after an eighth-place finish in Cali in 2013.

Laura Trott then took a third successive omnium silver at a world championships with a resilient performance, including two wins, to complete Britain’s medal tally.

"We didn't come to this worlds thinking we're going to come in and win a shed load of medals,” Sutton said.

"We're doing all in our power (and) we know we can lead these guys into a successful Rio. We know where we are and we know what's needed.”

Commenting on Britain’s medal tally, Sutton added: “That is three Olympic medals. We are at the races here, no doubt about it.

“If Cav wants to line up in the omnium, or Swift wants to line up in the omnium, or Clancy wants to line up in the omnium, then that is a fourth medal in which we are very competitive.

“The fifth one I think we will be very competitive in is the men's team sprint. I think given where we got to with Kian Emadi, the ride he did at the Commonwealth Games, and at the worlds last year, he had really developed well as a man three, before he got injured.

“That all of a sudden gives us a real golden opportunity. Five medals in which we are really competitive still.”

Cycling at the Rio Olympic Games is set to take place between 6-20 August next year and Sutton says the team will strive to be at their best.

“I don't want to put a metric on it,” he said. “We'll let everyone else do that. We just want to be the best we can be.

“Normally we take that attitude and we're successful. We have to go away and look at the detail and what it's going to take.”

The 2016 UCI Track Cycling World Championships will take place at London’s Lee Valley VeloPark from 2-6 March next year.

Last week British Cycling announced an accessible and affordable ticketing process for the event with tickets going on sale first to British Cycling members on 31 March before going on general sale on Tuesday 12 May.