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British Cycling to build pro team

Two British World Champions

Two British World Champions (Image credit: AFP)

British Cycling has endorsed a plan to set up a professional team for both men and women which will be run by the organisation, and announced that the organisation's Performance Director, Dave Brailsford, will stay on in that capacity until after the 2012 Olympics. Under Brailsford, British Cycling enjoyed unprecedented success in track, BMX and mountain biking and British cyclists are beginning to make waves on the road scene as well.

Brailsford called the professional team concept "a natural and eagerly awaited progression of our Olympic Programmes to create a top flight professional road team of British riders". After a successful start to the Tour de France in London, the British have embraced cycling, and Brailsford is keen to give them a home team to cheer for. "The opportunity to running a team based on the same performance principles as we currently employ is very exciting and one which I would like to make a reality. GB cycling fans are fantastic and I am sure that they would really get behind a British team competing in the major tours."

British Cycling's President Brian Cookson praised Brailsford for his achievements. "The confidence we had in appointing Dave to this role back in 2002 has been totally vindicated," Cookson said. "Dave has been a key factor in the unprecedented levels of success that we have enjoyed in recent years, and we were very keen to secure his services right through to the biggest objective ever for British sport, namely the London Olympics."

British track cyclists have had international success in both endurance and sprint events on the men's and women's side, demonstrating a vast depth of talent in recent years. Noted champions include Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton, Bradley Wiggins, Shanaze Reade, Jamie Staff. Reade is also BMX world champion.

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