Romero forced to abandon goals to win another Olympic title in London 2012
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Monday, October 10, 2011

Romero forced to abandon goals to win another Olympic title in London 2012

by VeloNation Press at 6:18 AM EST   comments
Categories: Track, Olympics, Injury
2008 individual pursuit winner leaves Olympic programme

Rebecca RomeroFrustrated by disrupted preparation towards the London Olympics, Rebecca Romero has made the difficult decision to abandon her ambitious of competing there, and of becoming one of a rare group of athletes to win medals in three Games.

The 31 year old was the individual pursuit gold medallist in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, and prior to that took a silver medal in quadruple sculls rowing in the 2004 Games.

Her cycling success made her the first British woman to compete in two different sports in the Olympics, and only the second woman worldwide to ever to take a medal in two different Summer Olympic sports.

Clearly driven, she admitted to a sense of anti-climax after Beijing but was working towards the London Games and the chance to take a medal on home soil. That aim is unfortunately now over. “Having suffered several setbacks at crucial points, I believe I’m no longer on a pathway which will see me fulfil my Olympic ambition to win a second Olympic gold medal,” she admitted today, announcing that she was leaving the Olympic cycling programme.

“I’m proud to have contributed to the cycling team’s great Olympic triumph in Beijing and I thank all the amazing people within British Cycling who were central to my success. I wish my current team mates every success in London next year.”

It is not yet known if she is walking away from cycling altogether, or if she could return in future world championships. She took silver in the individual pursuit at the 2007 worlds and then the following year won by the individual and team pursuit titles. The UCI's decision to drop the individual pursuit from the Olympic Games was a source of frustration to her.

British Cycling’s Performance Manager Shane Sutton has worked closely with her and said that he regretted that she had been forced to abandon her plans. “Rebecca’s decision to leave is a great loss to the team and it’s a shame to lose an Olympic Champion going into the Olympic year.”

While the country is now down a potential medallist, he believes that there’s a depth of talent there that can deliver. “Looking ahead, we have some great young talent in addition to experienced riders in the Team Pursuit squad. I’m confident we can remain on track to hit our performance targets in the lead up to and during the London Olympic Games.”


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