Having given up on his dreams of riding for Great Britain in the Rio Olympic Games road race, Peter Kennaugh has further explained his rationale for withdrawing, explaining honestly that he did not want to ride unless in optimal form.
"I did everything I possibly could to be in shape for the Rio Olympic Games with the time I had after breaking my collarbone at the Tour of California in May," said the London 2012 team pursuit gold medallist.
The 27-year-old crashed on stage 3 of the Tour of California in May, which saw him miss the defence of his national road race title, and a spot in Sky's Tour de France squad. Stephen Cummings (Dimension Data) was named as Kennaugh's replacement in Team GB's squad for the Olympic Games, having initially been left off the team.
Kennaugh made his return to racing at the Tour de Pologne this month in his bid to build form and condition for the challenging Rio course, finishing 51st overall with 31st in the final day time trial his best result of the race. Kennaugh explained that despite having finished the WorldTour race, he felt he wouldn't be at 100 per cent for Rio and wouldn't want to be there in anything less than optimal form.
"Unfortunately I just didn't feel at the level needed to compete at the Olympics and I didn't want to be on the start line at 70% as it wouldn't be fair on the team or myself, especially when you have other guys who are in the form of their lives and it's about having the best 5 guys there on the day. I wish all my team mates good luck on both road and track at Rio."
Follow the 2016 Tour de France with the Cyclingnews Tour Tracker app
The Cyclingnews Tour Tracker app is back and available to download. Providing you with the most detailed online and mobile coverage available for the Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana, with added bonus coverage of the 2016 Tour of Britain.
Like last year, there are two versions of the App. The free version, and the annual Pro upgrade ($1.99 USD or £1.49) which includes full coverage from our premium races. This includes live race commentary from the Cyclingnews editorial team, real-time GPS tracking, live time trial results, daily stage results and standings, stage recaps, photography and more.
The app can be downloaded from iTunes orGoogle Play, Current users should get the latest version to get 2016 coverage.
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Jelle Wallays solos to first Lotto-Soudal victory
"This is a very beautiful victory. I am not a sprinter, so I need to do it this way," Wallays said of the win. "These are rare opportunities. This win feels so good after the crashes and injuries in the first half of the season. I just got back from a training camp in the Vosges and this is a nice way to start the competition again. The Tour de Wallonie will be my next race. I’d like to show something there as well."
The 1.1 UCI race finished with three laps of a 13.8km circuit in Frameries with Wallays attacking at the start of the final lap, out lasting the sprint teams and attackers to hold on the win which he dedicated to teammate Stig Broeckx.
"When I got into the last corner, with one and a half kilometres to go, I had ten seconds advantage. I knew I was capable of finishing it off, but I had spent lots of energy. The uphill finish didn’t make it easy either," he added. "Of course I knew the chasers would be getting tired as well. I relied on my experience with solo escapes. I was also thinking about Stig and last year’s edition when I did get caught in the final kilometre. This year I remained ahead!"
Nine Boels Dolmans off to Rio Olympic Games
Dutch women's team Boels Dolmans will be represented by nine riders from its 12-riders squad at the upcoming Rio Olympic Games across road and track disciplines.
The riders headed to Rio are Ellen van Dijk (Netherlands), Karol-Ann Canuel (Canada), Christine Majerus (Luxembourg), Lizzie Armitstead and Nikki Harris (Great Britain), Romy Kasper (Germany), Megan Guarnier and Evie Stevens (USA) and Amalie Dideriksen (Denmark).
"It's clear the riders have reached a very high level," team manager Danny Stam said. "The sponsors asked me to make sure we had as many riders as possible at the Olympics, and that’s what we did. Our next goal is to earn a medal in Rio."