Following Great Britain’s record breaking ride in the women’s team pursuit, Joanna Rowsell, whose blistering start laid the foundations for gold, spoke to the press and hinted that it may be possible that the astonishing young trio could shave more time off the record in years to come.
Back in the world championships of 2008, when the women’s team pursuit was first introduced, Rowsell, then 19 rode with Rebecca Romero and Wendy Houvenaghel to record a world record of time of 3:22.415. Since then, the team has carved huge chunks of time off the record and in a sense made the women’s event their own, culminating in the events of yesterday which saw the record dip tantalisingly close to the 3:13 mark, with GB eclipsing the record three times in three rides.
Yet Rowsell, now 23, is confident that her and her Great Britain teammates can break into 3:13 territory: “As a three we come together so well, we’ve got a really good combination of abilities and we’ve worked really hard with how we structure the ride and how we pace it, said Joanna. “It’s just paying off every time we ride we go faster. So hopefully we’ll do a 3:13 next time”
“Laura’s 20, Dani’s 21 and I’m 23 – I’m the eldest in the team,” continued Rowsell, “which is a bit weird so I’m sure that there’s definitely more to come. We’re going to get stronger and stronger.”
With the London 2012 track competition still in progress and Laura Trott still to compete in the Women’s Omnium, their focus is most definitely on the here and now. Yet many have started to look ahead to the next Olympics in Rio 2016 and speculate on what the trio may be able to produce in four years time.
“Rio’s four years away and people have started asking us about that,” admitted Rowsell. “We haven’t really thought about that but definitely we can keep getting faster because we’re all going to get stronger as we get older.”
Trott, Rowsell and King’s performance in the velodrome on Saturday night has been one of the standout performances from British athletes at London and came amid a flood of golds on the day that was rightly billed as ‘Super Saturday’, with Mo Farah’s gold in the 10000 metres ending the day on a high for GB.
Great Britain’s track cycling campaign continues today with the men’s Omnium, men’s sprint and women’s sprint competitions.