Blogs & Opinion


Blogs:

Most Popular Posts:

Richard Moore says Ed Clancy faces tough test in Glasgow in men's team sprint debut

Blogs Posted 15th November 2012 view comments

Track cycling resumes this weekend in Glasgow, at the new Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, with the second World Cup of the winter featuring some of the stars of London 2012.

Easily the most interesting event, however, is Friday's men's team sprint. It will see the debut in this discipline of Ed Clancy, a team pursuit gold medallist at the last two Olympic Games.

Clancy has always been a hybrid: an endurance athlete on the cusp of being a sprinter. He is so quick that he inspired a change in the way GB rode the team pursuit. As man one, he would lead his team out of the start gate and remain at the front far longer than most, accelerating to race speed over the first 350 metres.

Clancy: can he hold onto Hindes and Kenny?

Clancy: can he hold onto Hindes and Kenny?

At the Olympics, as well as the team pursuit, he competed in the multi-event omnium and, in the kilo, recorded a time that would have won him the world title in 2006, '07 or '08; in the first two, the winner was Chris Hoy. Indeed, he was only two-tenths of a second behind Hoy's winning time at the Athens Olympics.

There is great curiosity about Clancy's ability in the team sprint, where he will step into Hoy's sizeable shoes as man three, with Philip Hindes and Jason Kenny - Hoy's colleagues at London 2012 - in front of him. It is a daunting prospect, not least because Clancy will be auditioning for the Hoy role in the venue that bears his name.

It is a daunting prospect, not least because Clancy will be auditioning for the Hoy role in the venue that bears his name.

Richard Moore
Quotes of the week

The big question is, will Clancy be able to hold on to Hindes and Kenny as they blast out of the start gate? The real test is the first lap; if he can hold on for the first 250 metres, he should be fine.

But he has admitted to some uncertainty, and acknowledged that it might go pear-shaped. "What's the worst that can happen?" was the rhetorical question he posed this week. "If I get dropped I ride for three laps on my own, never do the team sprint again, and go back to the team pursuit."

Before London, Clancy talked a bit about his future beyond the Games. While most pursuiters, if they are looking for a change, graduate to the road, Clancy's efforts over the longer distances haven't encouraged him to think he can make a successful switch.

"I go through phases of thinking about what I'll do," he told me during one of the team pursuit 'boot camps' in Majorca. "If I'm brutally honest, I've given the road a shot; I've had all the opportunities and chances to give it a good stab, but I still struggle with the endurance and backing up on stage racing.

"I would like to give the road a go but I wouldn't want to do it if I'm sh*t," he continued. "I'd like to be good. I grew up as an endurance rider, with G [Geraint Thomas], Cav [Mark Cavendish] and [Ben] Swift, but they're like the football players with the glamour and the fast cars and the big houses."

The lure of road racing was obvious to Clancy, but - there was a 'but'. "I'd really like to do it, but whether I've got it or not is the question that's flagged up in my own head. I wouldn't be happy doing it if I'm not good enough. I do a good job on the track. Do I want to sack off my track career to be a sh*t road pro?

"It does mess with my head now and again. I'd like to think I've got a proper gameplan for the rest of my life. But I haven't got a clue."

He was speaking in January. Now his decision to explore his potential in the shorter disciplines, and to have a go at the team sprint, might not indicate that he is any closer to a decision on his future, or what he might do in Rio in 2016.

Chances are Clancy will return to the team pursuit, perhaps with Bradley Wiggins and even, as he has hinted, Cavendish. But perhaps not. It will be fascinating to see how he gets on this weekend.

Twitter.com/richardmoore73

back to top

Other Blogs:

Latest Posts in :

Alex Ferguson

Clowney's no joke

US sports expert Alex Ferguson profiles Jadeveon Clowney, the biggest defensive pick of the draft....

Alex Ferguson

King James reigns

Alex Ferguson celebrates a wacky, smile-inducing year in US sport - and salutes Miami's LeBron James....

comments

Alex Ferguson

Start your engines!

Alex Ferguson predicts who will triumph in NASCAR's showpiece race, the Daytona 500....

comments

Alex Ferguson

A perfect union?

Alex Ferguson looks at the possible unionisation of college football and how he would handle the issue....

Alex Ferguson

Call of the century

Spacemen Portland pick Bowie over Jordan - Alex Ferguson ranks the biggest decisions in US Sport....

comments

Alex Ferguson

Independence aces

Alex Ferguson kicks off his Independence Day fun by picking his 20 best bits of American sport....

comments

Jamie Carragher

Bruce almighty

Steve Bruce deserves a mention when this year's managerial awards are handed out, says Carra....

Peter Beagrie

An Easter feast

Beags previews the cracking Easter action in the Championship, including games for the top three....

Ed Chamberlin

Van the man?

Ed Chamberlin explains why Tejay van Garderen is capable of plucking the Tour de France's Yellow Jersey....

comments

Martin Tyler

Goal crazy

When did Liverpool last score three without Suarez and Sturridge netting? Martin Tyler has the stats......

0 comments

Will Greenwood

Building momentum

Will Greenwood wants England to lay down a World Cup 2015 marker on their tour to New Zealand....

Dewi Morris

Heart and soul

Dewi Morris looks at a crucial weekend in the Championship as we head towards the play-offs....

Stuart Barnes

Ups and downs

Stuart Barnes says the drama of relegation must be kept in rugby, but the play-offs need changing....

Phil Clarke

To Hull and back

Phil Clarke looks at the mental damage done to Hull FC and Huddersfield in the Challenge Cup....

Rob Lee

Pinky and perky

Rob Lee blogs on his vivid Masters Breakfast attire and the men that made waves at Augusta National....

Paul McGinley

Joy for Jonas?

Jonas Blixt has the short game and heart to win the Masters at Augusta, says Paul McGinley....

0 comments

Barry Cowan

Heavy burden

Great Britain's best Davis Cup since 1986 fails to mask their reliance on Andy Murray, says Barry Cowan....

Barry Cowan

No force without Fab

Britain's Davis Cup quarter-final with Italy rests on the fitness of Fabio Fognini, says Barry Cowan...

Alex Hammond

Going the distance

Marathon entrant Alex Hammond previews the Newbury action and Scottish National meeting at Ayr....

Alex Hammond

Rocky's road

Alex Hammond explains why she is backing Rocky Creek and Lion Na Bearnai at the Grand National....

Andrew Balding

Resting up

Trainer Andrew Balding says On Demand is progressing well - but now needs time to recuperate....

Johnny Nelson

The best of friends

It will be tough but Johnny Nelson expects mates Anthony Crolla and John Murray to serve up a classic....

Glenn McCrory

Manny happy returns

Manny Pacquiao is back to his best and could yet get it on with Floyd Mayweather, says Glenn McCrory....

Johnny Nelson

Delighted for DeGale

James DeGale's Matchroom switch is the perfect move to get him back in the mix, says Johnny Nelson....

View from America

Desperate deals?

Simon Veness reviews a crazy week in the NFL's free agent frenzy, as sides splash out over $1bn....

comments

Neal Foulds

Night at the Circus

Neal Foulds is looking forward to another fun, raucous Snooker Shoot-Out - but can't pick a winner....

comments

Neal Foulds

Simply the best?

Five-time Masters champion Ronnie O'Sullivan may be the best snooker player ever, says Neal Foulds....

comments

Neal Foulds

Four to the fore

Neil Robertson and snooker's other leading lights are pulling clear of the pack, says Neal Foulds....

comments

Kelvin Tatum

The contenders

Kelvin Tatum runs through the teams and riders ahead of the 2014 Elite League Speedway season....

Kelvin Tatum

Kelvin's 2013 Review

Kelvin Tatum salutes Poole's hierarchy and Tai Woffinden in his round-up of the speedway season....

comments

Kelvin Tatum

Rich re-Ward

Poole, and the dynamic Darcy Ward, will wrap up the Elite League title at Perry Barr, says Kelvin Tatum....

comments

Richard Moore

The final curtain

Richard Moore reflects on Sunday's Closing Ceremony to an unforgettable Olympic Games......

comments

Richard Moore

A lasting golden glow

Richard Moore suggests all the British Olympians should visit schools and talk about their experiences....

comments

Richard Moore

Favourite Froome

Richard Moore reveals his predictions for the 100th Tour de France, which starts on Saturday....

comments

Wayne McCullough

Wonderful Davis

Wayne McCullough watched Antonio Rogerio Nogueria take on Phil Davis at UFC Fight Night 24. ...

0 comments

Wayne McCullough

Jones shines bright

Wayne McCullough was highly impressed as the talented Jon Jones made short work of Mauricio Rua....

2 comments

Wayne McCullough

A bloody marvel

Wayne McCullough salutes Diego Sanchez as he edges out Martin Kampmann in a UFC humdinger....

0 comments