Cycling New Zealand’s head of high performance says a record 16 medals at the ‘Super World’ championships is an “ideal litmus test” for the 2024 Olympics in Paris.
The advent of the Super-Worlds – the combined UCI Cycling World Championships featuring 13 disciplines over 12 days in and around Glasgow – has proved a huge success, Cycling New Zealand (CNZ) high performance director Ryan Hollows said.
CNZ was delighted with the results on and off the bikes, with record performances for track, mountain bike, BMX and Para-cycling, and a supportive unit across the team.
The 16 medals included five rainbow jerseys, with record returns for athletics, mountain bike and BMX.
In addition, there was a close partnership with Paralympians New Zealand, who were enjoying a record 12 medals, with their program to be integrated into Cycling New Zealand next year.
Eleven months after the Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games, the results, especially from emerging talent, have excited the team, despite the colossal logistical challenge for a small organizing team and the pressure on staff across disciplines.
Kiwi cyclist becomes NZ’s first individual world champion in a sprint sport.
“It’s fair to say this was a big logistical task. Our logistics, operations, coaching and performance have been incredible and really stepped up,” Hollows said.
“When you get the results and the quality of performance across the board, it makes all this extraordinary workload worthwhile.
“The Super-Worlds will be held every four years, the year before the Olympics, which is the perfect time for a litmus test for the sport.
“In that regard, we are excited to be on track in the endurance and sprint sectors in track cycling, a huge effort from Sam Gaze and Anton Cooper looking towards Paris and the performance of Samara Maxwell in cross-country mountain biking.
“She’s not in the Olympics, but the women’s under-23 downhill clean sweep was outstanding.
“Equally, our developing BMX riders are very promising and will have a huge opportunity to stake claims for Paris and beyond at the UCI World Cup round in Rotorua next February.”
Hollows said they will work with Road Director Sportif Craig Geater to ensure the availability of New Zealand’s World Tour riders for the road campaign in Paris, supported by their respective professional road teams.
“We’ve never had so many World Tour pros and we’d love to send our strongest possible team to Paris for the road campaign.”
Hollows said he and key staff will spend a few days in Paris on the way home to check on some final logistics and operations for the 2024 Olympics.
It is also hoped that the success and profile created in these leagues will boost development programs back in New Zealand, looking ahead to Los Angeles, Brisbane and beyond.
NEW ZEALAND WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS CYCLING MEDAL
Mountain Bike Junior Women Downhill Erice van Leuven.
Mountain Bike Under 23 Women XCO Samara Maxwell.
Mountain Bike Elite Men XCC Sam Gaze.
Track Elite Women Keirin Ellesse Andrews.
Watch Elite Men Points Aaron Gate.
Mountain Bike Junior Women Downhill Poppy Lane.
Mountain Bike Elite Men XCO Sam Gaze.
Track Women Team Pursuit Bryony Botha, Ally Wollaston, Michaela Drummond, Emily Shearman.
Mountain Bike Junior Women Downhill Sacha Earnest.
Track Individual Pursuit Bryony Botha.
Michaela Drummond Track Scratch Race.
Track Men Team Pursuit Aaron Gate, Campbell Stewart.
Nick Kergozou, Tom Sexton.
Track Men Madison Aaron Gate, Campbell Stewart
Track Women Sprint Ellesse Andrews.
BMX Racing Men Under 23 Rico Bearman.
BMX Racing Women Under 23 Megan Williams.
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