Liam Killeen and Oli Beckingsale will spearhead Great Britain’s ten-rider cross-country team for the World Championships in Champery on August 31-September 4 – focussed on scoring valuable Olympic qualification points on the road to London 2012.
Great Britain currently sit 14th in the men’s rankings, meaning, as it stands, they will qualify just one rider for the Olympic Games, while the women lie 21st to be in line for one spot on the start line next summer.
British Cycling have identified Killeen, seventh at the Beijing Games and Beckingsale as key point scorers, alongside Dave Fletcher, who will ride the men’s under-23 category with Kenta Gallagher, and Annie Last, Britain’s sole representative in the women’s under-23 field.
A decision on who will ride the elite women’s race will be made following next month’s European Championships.
The World Championships is an integral event – alongside the World Cup series and Hadleigh Farm International Olympic test event, which takes place on Sunday – in shaping the UCI’s nation ranking, which determines how many riders a country qualifies for London 2012.
For men, the top five points scorers over the two-year qualifying period earn three spots on the start line , while sixth to thirteenth guarantees two places and nations ranked 14-24 guarantee a single spot. For women, the top eight nations secure two places, while positions nine to eighteen take one.
Meanwhile, Grant Ferguson and Matt Sumpton will contest the junior men’s race in Champery, while Bethany Crumpton and Katy Winton will race the junior women’s event. Ferguson, Fletcher, Gallagher and world downhill champion will ride the team relay, which also carries UCI points, added to both the men’s and women’s final Olympic qualification totals.
Great Britain squad
TBA – following European Championships
Grant Ferguson, Dave Fletcher, Kenta Gallagher, Tracy Moseley