Lizzie Armitstead (Boels Dolmans) believes that the rest of the world will be scared of the British women’s team at this summer’s Olympic Games. Current world road race champion, Armitstead, heads towards Rio as the one the favourites, and although the British women’s team will probably comprise of just three riders, the likely inclusion of Emma Pooley will give the squad both experience and pedigree on a course suited to specialist climbers.
Pooley has not dedicated herself to the road since 2014 when she competed in the Commonwealth Games. She helped Armitstead to victory in the road race back then, and after a stint in duathlon she is set to return to the road with the Olympic time trial and the race road in her programme, should she be selected for the Games.
“The thing is with Emma is that she will never retire,” Armitstead told Cyclingnews on Monday.
Armitstead, although long removed from the track set up, knows British Cycling better than most, even though the vast majority of her road career has been carried out without their support. Although she would not be drawn specifically on the Varnish’s allegations, providing a small but perhaps telling “no comment” when asked if she was surprised by what Varnish had to say, she did offer her support and understanding as one athlete to another.
“The support going into Rio has been really good so I don’t know what goes on at the track anyone, especially on the sprint side.