Hoy on target for track worlds

Britain's top track sprinter Chris Hoy is happy with his form with just three months ahead of the...

Britain's top track sprinter Chris Hoy is happy with his form with just three months ahead of the start of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Manchester, March 26-30, 2008. The 31-year-old from Edinburgh has already won gold medals in the Keirin events at the first two rounds of the UCI World Cup events in Sydney and Beijing this year and is feeling positive about his preparation for his big year ahead.

"It's pretty much on target," said Hoy. "It is still early in the season at the moment but every race counts in qualification for the World Championships. It is good to start the season on a high by winning a few gold medals and getting some good placings."

Hoy won gold medals in the men's kilometre time trial and Keirin in the 2007 World Championships in Palma, Mallorca. His world cup Keirin victories give him three consecutive wins in the event against world class competition.

"The Keirin is quite an unpredictable event and it is not often that you can get a string of consistent places," he added. "It is encouraging that I can go unbeaten for so long but it is inevitable that it won't go on forever. I am getting more experienced and the longer it goes on, the better it is for me.

"The kilometre time trial and team sprint events are a bit more predictable because it is just you against the clock but if you ride to your strengths in the Keirin and stick to your game plan, you can eliminate a lot of the variables," said Hoy.

The GB team has a huge battle ahead in the men's team sprint. Hoy led the team sprinters to bronze in the Sydney World Cup but has his sights set on World Championship gold in Manchester.

"We haven't really decided our 'A' team in the team sprint yet," Hoy explained. "We have been trying different people in different positions so we have yet to run our full strength team, which obviously we will do at the World Championships.

"This year we missed the gold medal by two thousandths of a second in Palma, which is less than a blink of an eye," he added. "So we are looking at every possible area where we can make small gains. We have not won a team sprint gold since Los Angeles in 2005 so we are aiming to turn that round in Manchester and that would be great to do that in front of a home crowd pushing us on."

Hoy has also picked up some awards off the bike. He was in his native Scotland last week for a civic reception in Edinburgh celebrating his successes on the track in 2007. He also picked up the Sports Person of the year award from the City of Glasgow this month.

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