Wrenthorpe cyclist Ollie Wood earns GB selection for Tokyo Olympics
Wrenthorpe cyclist Ollie Wood has achieved his ambition of earning selection for the Great Britain cycling team for this year’s Tokyo Olympics.
Commonwealth Games medallist Wood, 25, has been chosen in the men’s endurance track team alongside fellow Yorkshireman Ed Clancy, Ethan Hayter, Ethan Vernon, Matt Walls and travelling reserve Charlie Tanfield.
Wood has represented Great Britain at a number of international competitions in track cycling, initially being crowned team pursuit champion at the 2015 Under 23 European Track Championships, as well as winning a silver medal in the omnium event.
At the final round of the UCI Track Cycling World Cup in Hong Kong Ollie along with Germain Burton, Chris Latham and Kian Emadi won the bronze medal in the team pursuit.
In the summer of 2016, Wood was part of the Great Britain cycling team at the UEC Under 23 European Track Championships, winning bronze in the team pursuit, a result matched a few months later in the senior European championships in France.
Wood then claimed his first senior gold medal as part of the team pursuit line-up at the first round of the 2016/17 UCI Track Cycling World Cup in Glasgow, adding madison bronze a week later in Apeldoorn, Netherlands.
Those performances earned him selection for his first UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Hong Kong, where he was part of the endurance squad that finished fourth in the team pursuit.
In 2018 he brought home a silver medal from the Commonwealth Games when teaming up with Clancy in the team pursuit while the same year brought a bronze in the UEC European Track Championships in the madison.
Most recently Wood had a first place finish in the 2019 Sheffield Criterium and third place finishes in the European Track Championships in the omnium and team pursuit events while he was third again in the European Championship last year in the scratch event.
But this will be his first appearance in an Olympics and it is the culmination of much hard work for the Wakefield rider, who has been competing at national level for seven years and always declared the Tokyo spectacular as his big career aim.
Speaking about the Olympic team selection, British cycling performance director Stephen Park said: “I am incredibly excited by the squad we have selected to represent Team GB in Tokyo and there will be plenty for British cycling fans to cheer for during the Olympic Games.
“We have six Olympic champions bolstering our squad, with Geraint Thomas, Ed Clancy, Jason Kenny, Laura Kenny, Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald all very driven to add more medals to their palmares.
“At the other end of the spectrum, we pride ourselves on the strength of our pathway and this is evident in the team we have selected with recent Academy graduates making our Olympic team.
“I’m proud of the focus the support team have made in attempting to diversify our medals, with a real investment going into the BMX and mountain bike disciplines. I’m certain we will see this investment pay off with great performances in Tokyo which will then stand us in good stead leading into Paris 2024.
“We are renowned for our domination in the track events and, while we have a realistic expectation that the rest of the world will be more competitive than ever this year, I am still extremely excited to see every single member of the track squad in the hunt for a medal in Tokyo.
“Everyone on the Great Britain Cycling Team is committed to doing the jersey proud, and this will be no different when we compete for Team GB at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.”