Great Britain confirm final squad for Innsbruck World Championships

Simon Yates expected to lead men’s elite team after Thomas and Froome end season early

Simon and Adam Yates, British national champion Connor Swift and Tao Geoghegan Hart have been confirmed in the Great Britain squad for the road World Championships in Innsbruck, with Dani Rowe and Hannah Barnes leading the women’s team.

Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas and Giro d’Italia winner Chris Froome were part of the long-list named on August 30 but both have ended their season at the recent Tour of Britain.

Simon Yates is expected to be team leader for the testing 258km elite men road race that ends with the extremely steep Höll climb and includes 4670m of climbing. Their biggest rivals are expected to be Alejandro Valverde of Spain, Julian Alaphilippe and Thibaut Pinot of France, Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali, and Nairo Quintana and Rigoberto Uran of Colombia.

Ian Stannard, winner of stage seven of this year’s Tour of Britain, and reigning national champion Connor Swift are also part of the elite men team, as are Hugh Carthy, Pete Kennaugh, Tao Geoghegan Hart and James Knox. Geoghegan Hart and Alex Dowsett will ride the time trial, where 2017 winner Tom Dumoulin is the favourite.

There is no place for Steve Cummings. The elite men’s team will be directed by new Great Britain Academy coach Matt Brammeier.

The women’s road race team will consist of six riders, with Dani Christmas, Alice Cobb, Anna Henderson and Sophie Wright joining Rowe and Hannah Barnes. Hayley Simmonds and Alice Barnes will ride the elite women’s time trial.

“Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas are obvious omissions from the men’s team, and this was a decision we made mutually,” Great Britain Performance Director Stephen Park said when the team was confirmed.

“Given the challenging nature of the course, we want every rider selected to be able to give their 100% to the team, and on the back of what has been an incredible season for both G [Geraint Thomas] and Froomey [Chris Froome], it’s understandable they are unable to commit to this.

“I’m looking for us to carry on the momentum of this season into Innsbruck and I’m expecting to see some good performances in each race. We can then build on this in 2019 when the World Championships come to Yorkshire and we can look forward to competing on our home roads.”

Team pursuit world champions Ethan Hayter and Charlie Tanfield will represent Great Britain in the under-23 men’s time trial, with Hayter also selected for the road race after impressed at the Tour of Britain. He will be joined by Mark Donovan, James Shaw, Max Stedman and Steven Williams.

Shaw rides for the Lotto Soudal WorldTour team, while Williams will turn professional with Bahrain-Merida after winning the Ronde de l'Isard stage race in the Pyrenees and a stage at the U23 Giro d’Italia. Hayter and Donovan were listed as stagiaire riders with Team Sky for the final months of the season but have still to ride in British WorldTour team’s colours.

Reigning junior cyclo-cross world champion Ben Tulett is amongst those selected for the men’s junior team and will ride both the road race and the time trial events. Pfeiffer Georgi, who won two rounds of this year’s UCI Women’s Junior Nations’ Cup series, is set to compete in the road race and the time trial. Elynor Backstedt – the daughter of Paris-Roubaix winner Magnus Backstedt is also in the junior women’s team.

The World Championships will be held between September 23-30 in Innsbruck, Austria, with the team time trials kicking off the week of racing on Sunday.

Cyclingnews will have full coverage of the World Championships, with live updates, race reports, news and exclusive interviews.

Great Britain Cycling Team for UCI Road World Championships 2018:

Elite Men’s Road Race: Hugh Carthy, Tao Geoghegan Hart, Pete Kennaugh, James Knox, Ian Stannard, Connor Swift, Adam Yates and Simon Yates.

Elite Men’s Time Trial: Alex Dowsett, Tao Geoghegan Hart.

Elite Women’s Road Race: Hannah Barnes, Dani Christmas, Alice Cobb, Anna Henderson, Dani Rowe and Sophie Wright.

Elite Women’s Time Trial: Alice Barnes, Hayley Simmonds.

Under-23 Men’s Road Race: Mark Donovan, Ethan Hayter, James Shaw, Max Stedman, Stephen Williams.

Under 23 Men’s Time Trial: Ethan Hayter, Charlie Tanfield.

Junior Men’s Road Race: Lewis Askey, Alfie George, Mason Hollyman, Ben Tulett, Sam Watson.

Junior Men’s Time Trial: Joe Laverick, Ben Tulett

Junior Women’s Road Race: Elynor Backstedt, Pfeiffer Georgi, Amy Monkhouse, Amelia Sharpe, April Tacey.

Junior Women’s Time Trial: Pfeiffer Georgi, Elynor Backstedt.

 

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