Cycling is one of the best medal hopes for Team GB at the Tokyo Olympics
Plenty of previous Olympic medallists are looking to win more hardware in Japan this summer
Read below for more on the history of Team GB cycling and the 2020 squad
When it comes to online betting, cycling is seldom at the forefront. The Tour de France gets some attention, but other than that, cycling is a niche interest outside of Olympic years.
With Team GB enjoying such success at recent Games, the cycling group have become stars in their own right.
Medals have been plentiful. Athletes have become celebrities. Team GB cycling has a wonderful history, producing many of the country’s most successful Olympians.
From those regularly looking for betting tips to part-time sports fans, everyone recognises the stars of the British cycling. They are in the spotlight once again this summer.
Beijing, London and Rio have happy memories for the Team GB’s cyclists. They have climbed the all-time medal tables in the sport, and helped Team GB achieve unprecedented Olympic success.
Here’s everything you need to know about Team GB cycling, starting with a bit of history…
Team GB Cycling History
Team GB cycling goes beyond the velodrome. Lengthy road races, mountain biking and BMX are all included in the cycling team despite the perception.
Like many sports, cycling at the Olympics has come and gone. Some events have been patchy in their Olympic appearances.
Talking about the history of Team GB cycling, though, is really focused on the last three Games.
There were plenty of medals in the men’s team pursuit in the early years, including a gold in 1908, but it’s Beijing, London and Rio de Janeiro where the British cyclists have really proven their dominance.
The men’s sprint team have won the last three golds. Bradley Wiggins notched a gold in the time trial, and stars like Laura Kenny and Victoria Pendleton have collected medals at a prolific rate.
This success has been repeated in World Championships, Commonwealth Games and other events across the cycling calendar. The Olympics may be the highlight, but Team GB has been a force for over a decade.
Team GB have totalled 71 medals on the track. This includes winning seven gold medals at Beijing 2008 and London 2012 as well as six at Rio 2016.
Where Wiggins and others have shone on the road, Team GB is yet to conquer mountain biking.
The event was first introduced to the Olympics in Atlanta in 1996, and Liam Killeen’s fifth-placed finish in Athens eight years later is Team GB’s best performance to date.
Tokyo 2020 GB Cycling Team
There are 26 cyclists making up the Team GB cycling group for the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Former medallists and Olympic rookies alike head to Japan with high hopes. As ever, Team GB will be among the frontrunners in cycling betting.
Laura and Jason Kenny are the headline names. Among the most successful cyclists of all-time, they are expected to be in contention once again.
With golds to his name at each of the last three Olympics, Ed Clancy is looking to make it four in a row in Japan. Katy Marchant, who won a bronze five years ago, will be representing Team GB in the women’s sprint.
Team GB has never won a medal in the men’s or women’s mountain biking. Tom Pidcock and Evie Richards will be hoping to end that unwanted streak.
BMX is being introduced for the first time in Tokyo. Kye Whyte, Beth Shriever, Declan Brooks and Charlotte Worthington are Team GB’s BMX representatives.
Men’s Road: Tao Geoghegan Hart, Geraint Thomas, Adam Yates, Simon Yates
Men’s TT: Tao Geoghegan Hart, Geraint Thomas
Women’s Road: Lizzie Deignan, Anna Shackley
Women’s TT: Anna Shackley
Men’s Mountain Bike: Tom Pidcock
Women’s Mountain Bike: Evie Richards
Men’s BMX Supercross: Kye Whyte, Ross Cullen (travelling reserve)
Women’s BMX Supercross: Beth Shriever
Men’s BMX Freestyle Park: Declan Brooks, James Jones (travelling reserve)
Women’s BMX Freestyle Park: Charlotte Worthington
Men’s Track Endurance: Ed Clancy, Ethan Hayter, Ethan Vernon, Matt Walls, Ollie Wood, Charlie Tanfield (travelling reserve)
Women’s Track Endurance: Katie Archibald, Elinor Barker, Neah Evans, Laura Kenny, Josie Knight
Women’s Track Sprint: Katy Marchant
Men’s Track Sprint: Jack Carlin, Jason Kenny, Ryan Owens, Phil Hindes (travelling reserve)
Most Successful Team GB Cyclists:
Decorated is the only word for Team GB’s cyclists. The women have amassed 16 total medals, a tally only bettered by the Dutch and Americans. The 71 medals won by the men is second only to the French.
With seven total medals apiece (six golds, one silver), Chris Hoy and Jason Kenny are the joint-most successful Team GB Olympians. Kenny is aiming to overtake his close friend in Tokyo.
Former Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins is close behind with five golds and eight total medals. Wiggins’ time trial gold in London in 2012 was one of the great moments of the Games.
He also enjoyed several triumphant days in the velodrome with two individual pursuit and two team pursuit golds.
Wiggins was accompanied by Geraint Thomas, Ed Clancy and Paul Manning in the first of his team pursuit golds. This was the first men’s team pursuit gold since 1908. Clancy has followed up by winning the gold again in London and Rio.
Laura Kenny is the most successful female Olympic track cyclist of all-time. Kenny has four Olympic golds, doing the omnium-team pursuit double in London and Rio.
Victoria Pendleton won two golds and a silver in the velodrome. The sprint gold in Beijing was Team GB’s first medal in the event, and she followed it up with a silver in London four years later. Pendleton also won a gold in the keirin in her home Games.
*Credit for the main photo belongs to Alastair Grant / AP Photo*