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Omnium champion O'Shea on track for Minsk worlds

By:
Alex Malone
Published:
February 14, 2013, 5:40 GMT,
Updated:
February 14, 2013, 5:40 GMT
Edition:
First Edition Cycling News, Thursday, June 6, 2013
Race:
UCI Track World Championships
Australia's Glenn O'Shea in his world champions jersey in the flying lap in the men's Omnium

Australia's Glenn O'Shea in his world champions jersey in the flying lap in the men's Omnium

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Road season next on agenda with An Post - ChainReaction

Reigning world omnium champion Glenn O'Shea has already tasted success this year at the recent Australian national championships in the 1km time trial and team pursuit and says getting a few wins on the board are perfect for lifting the confidence within his Australian Cyclones National Team heading into the UCI Track World Championships in Minsk, Belarus.

It's been a busy few months for O'Shea with track commitments dominating his time since late last year, contesting the Glasgow World Cup before partnering-up with Omega Pharma - Quick-Step's Iljo Keisse for his first Six-Day win in Gent.

"To get a few good results under the belt coming into worlds, it gives you a bit of confidence," O'Shea told Cyclingnews after taking home two more national track titles.

"We have had a pretty heavy work load, now we'll just freshen up a little bit and be ready to go."

Now, with the Australian titles behind him it's all about retaining his omnium world champion status and seeking to go one better from 2012 in the team pursuit - which will require knocking Team GB off the top spot. O'Shea admitted it will be a difficult task to overhaul the Great British team this year but also pointed to Russia and Denmark to post a serious challenge.

"Our whole team is different from last year - I'm the only one left from the worlds team," explained O'Shea while also adding the final four-man selection had yet to be made.

"If you look at Great Britain, they've got three guys who rode worlds last year so I think Great Britain will be the team to beat. They will be the benchmark.

"We are going there with the goal to get a second ride in the team pursuit and then ride-off for a medal," he said.

A full-time road career is certainly another goal for the ambitious 23-year-old but with his Olympic Games debut in London not delivering the results he expected, the track and another shot at Omnium gold in 2016 is something that needs to be seriously considered.

"Track gave me the opportunity to go to the Olympics. I probably didn't quite achieve what I wanted so I'll keep heading down the track direction for the next few years and see if it looks like I'm a good chance to go to the next Olympics," he told Cyclingnews.

While track is O'Shea's primary focus at the moment, he is also ensuring that his name is known on the road. This year he will ride for the Belgian-based An Post - ChainReaction team and will travel straight after the Championships to join his new teammates.

"I like to keep challenging myself. Trying to make a career on the road is probably the next thing I need to do and this year I'm riding to An Post. They are giving me some opportunities to ride some really good races so hopefully I can put my hand up there and have a red-hot crack," he said.

"At the end of the day I need to get out there and get the results on the road if I want to take the next step."

 

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Tags:
World championships UCI