Updated: Tuesday, 21st November 2017 @ 8:07am

Tokyo 2020 on 'rounded' Clancy's mind ahead of busy summer of bike racing

Tokyo 2020 on 'rounded' Clancy's mind ahead of busy summer of bike racing

| By Phil Jones

Ed Clancy has a busy few months of racing ahead of him, and has set his sights firmly on the Tour Series starting this month as his primary objective.

The 32-year-old from Barnsley is a three-time Olympic champion after triumphing in the team pursuits at the 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games.

While his most notable successes have come on the track, he still has a love for road riding – in which he competes for the JLT Condor team, who also ride in the Revolution Series.

First up for Clancy in a busy summer will be the Tour Series, which kicks off in Redditch on May 9.

“We’ve got the Tour Series coming up, we’ll be well into that – that’s one of the big aims for me,” said the Yorkshireman at the launch of Season 15 of the Revolution Track Cycling Series.

“That’s the big target, I love the crit racing, I love road riding, but criteriums for me is as good as bike racing gets, apart from maybe the team pursuit on a good day.

“I can’t wait for the Tour Series, after that we’ve got the national circuit series, and the Nocturne Series later on, so plenty of crits to get stuck into in the next two or three months.

“After that, I’m hearing rumours that the Tour of Britain is relatively flat this year, so who knows, a track rider might be able to get round it for a change. I’m not writing that one off yet, either.”

Clancy has shown his adeptness at criterium racing in recent years, winning the London Nocturne in 2015 and eight wins in the Tour Series since it was launched in 2009.

His JLT Condor also hold the record for the most overall victories with three but, while Clancy wants to have a varied career in the two years after Rio 2016, he is in no doubt as to what his future holds.

“Long term, I want to focus on other things and have a bit of a rounded career for the next two years,” he added. “I want to do the criteriums, the road racing, the Revolution Series, as well as the track racing.

“But as soon as we get to August 2018, there’s no confusion, the goal is going to be Tokyo 2020 – and I suspect that will be that, because I’ll be 35 then!”

Not included in Clancy’s varied plan for the season just gone was the World Championships, which he passed on in favour of preparing for the road season.

And while he admits to not paying huge attention to Great Britain winning five medals and finishing joint fourth in the table, being back at the Manchester velodrome for the Revolution launch – which he won last year- fuelled his natural curiosity in his colleague’s performances.

“It’s the first championships in a long time that I have not attended, so just being back in the building for a short period of time makes me want to come back here,” he said.

“I was wrapped up in my own stage race in France at the time, so I didn’t pay too much attention to it, we were trying to target stage wins ourselves.

“But now being back in the building and looking at the stage graphs, really trying to soak up what’s been going on, it does feel different not being involved, though.

“It feels great to have been part of Revolution, to be honest. I remember the first race of the first series, when I was just a little kid lining up on the fence and my heroes, Bradley Wiggins and David Millar, were riding - those guys were the two big superstars of that event.

“I don’t like to predict bike races. For sure it was great to win last season, and we’ll try to win it again, and the key players will probably be the track based riders, perhaps from the UK and it’s a home series and we’ll put a lot of emphasis on it.”

See the world’s best road teams take on the champions of the track in the Revolution Track Cycling Series. Tickets now on sale at http://cyclingrevolution.eventbrite.com