A world record will be needed to win the gold medal in the men’s team pursuit at the Olympic Games in London in August.
That’s the view of British individual pursuit champion, Steven Burke, who spoke yesterday to RoadCyclingUK just hours after his selection for Great Britain at the London 2012 Olympic Games had been made public.
The 24-year-old Lancastrian, who races on the road for Team IG-Sigma Sport, said concentrating on the challenge of teams such as Australia in August would be a mistake.
“To be honest, I don’t really think about the other teams because it’s such a close discipline. It’s just about going as fast as you can over 4,000 metres.
“If you think too much about the opposition, it’s a disadvantage really. We’ve just got to concentrate on ourselves.
“I think we need to break the world record to win. As long as we do that, we’ve got a good chance,” he said.
Burke has been named among the five-man endurance squad with which he raced to a world record and gold medal at the world championships in Australia in April.
He replaced Andy Tennant in the four man team for the world championship final and said a rotation policy was likely to be implemented again at the Olympics.
Burke won a bronze medal in the individual pursuit at the Beijing Olympics in 2008. He said that while experience on the world stage would help him, competing on home soil was less important than victory.
“It’s about winning medals in my opinion. I’m sure it will make it extra special, but as long as I win a gold medal I’m not bothered where it is,” he said.
Burke will meet up with teammates today at a training camp in Manchester, from where they will later fly to Mallorca for a road-based endurance camp, before returning to Newport to join the Olympic holding camp.
“There’s a lot of hard work to be done but I think time will fly as well. We’ve got to knuckle down now as we have been doing as a team and hopefully things will come good,” he said.
“I’m really looking forward to getting on with it and hopefully the result will come good in August,” he said.