Laura Kenny has only a ‘slim chance’ of competing at Paris Olympics, says British Cycling performance director

Time running out for six-time Olympic medalist, as Britain's most successful female Olympian looks set to miss out on Paris

Clock13:28, Tuesday 5th March 2024
Laura Kenny has previously been appointed an OBE, CBE and DBE for her services to cycling

© Getty Images

Laura Kenny has previously been appointed an OBE, CBE and DBE for her services to cycling

Multiple Olympic medallist Laura Kenny has a “slim chance” of competing at the Olympics this summer, according to British Cycling’s performance director.

The reigning Olympic Madison champion, who gave birth to a second child last July, is unlikely to defend her title having not competed since late 2022, and without the ranking points necessary to qualify for the Games.

“She has a slim chance of being in Paris," Stephen Park told Cycling Weekly. "The first challenge is for her to be in a position where she feels that she is going to be competitive, and therefore put herself up to be selected for events that will allow her to qualify herself as well as qualify in the team.

"Both of those are fairly significant hurdles because you need to be able to get to the right events on an individual level to qualify, and secondly she's got to be competitive in a team that's more competitive than it's ever been."

Read more: 'Everyone thinks I'm mad' – Laura Kenny targeting Paris 2024 Olympics return

Kenny has yet to return to training with the team and is working back up to race fitness with personal coach Len Parker Simpson.

Competition will be fierce for the five endurance squad places on offer. British riders took gold in the Madison and team pursuit at the Track World Championships last summer, with Neah Evans, sisters Elinor and Meg Barker, Katie Archibald, Josie Knight, and Anna Morris all current rainbow jersey holders and fighting for places in Paris.

The 31-year-old has not been selected for the UCI Nations Cup round in Hong Kong this month, and would need to earn points either there or in Milton, Canada, in April, to qualify.

Kenny has won five Olympic gold medals and one silver, winning the omnium and team pursuit on her debut in London 2012 and defending both titles in Rio. She won the Madison in Tokyo in 2021 alongside Archibald, four years after the birth of her eldest son Albie.

Read more: Chris Hoy and Kristina Vogel: for track cycling to succeed, we need to hear the stories behind the medals

Park said she is "optimistic" about competing at October’s World Championships.

Husband Jason Kenny, the most decorated Olympic cyclist in history with seven golds and two silvers, has been working as a British Cycling coach since retiring in 2022. Park believes Laura will go in a similar direction, saying, “I’m sure whether she ends up riding in the Games or not, she’ll be involved in some way or another.

"I think that Laura will have an ongoing involvement with the Great Britain Cycling Team for years to come."

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