Cycling’s ruling body, the UCI has confirmed that, for the first time, New Zealand has qualified for every discipline in track cycling for the Rio Olympics.
New Zealand is one of only three nations to have achieved full qualification along with Australia and Germany.
As well as the team sprint, team pursuit and omnium for both men and women, New Zealand has qualified two places for the individual sprint and the keirin, again both for men and women.
“It is what we have been working towards and it was cemented with some exceptional performances at the World Championships in London,” said head coach Dayle Cheatley.
“It is encouragement for our coaches and support staff that they are moving in the right direction and fantastic reward for the riders throughout our entire squad who have all contributed.
“For us it is the first tick in the box. Now the really hard work begins. All the work they have put in to establish this platform will be wasted if we cannot take full advantage from here in.”
Cheatley said that the coaching staff want to ensure that the riders maximize the next 19 weeks until Rio.
“We want to ensure that the riders make every day, every session, every pedal stroke, every lift and every minute of rest count.”
The riders are back in full training since a break following the world championships in London.
CAPTION: The New Zealand track team after the recent UCI World Championships in London.
Photo courtesy: Guy Swarbrick