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Cycling: Leicestershire duo to spearhead assault on Euro Olympics

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Grace Garner and Charlotte Broughton will lead Great Britain's cycling challenge at the European Youth Olympics in the Netherlands later this month.

The Countesthorpe College duo, who are both members of British Cycling's Talent Team, will tackle the time-trial and road race at the prestigious event.

Garner's RST-Trigon team-mate, and regular Madison partner on the boards, Abby-Mae Parkinson completes the GB girls' team.

Garner and Broughton have both put together impressive strings of wins on road and track this season, 16-year-old Garner striking again at the weekend when she scored her second consecutive victory in the national youth circuit series when she and Broughton landed a Leicestershire one-two at Curborough.

"I was getting quite nervous about the selection," said Cosby's Garner, whose victories include a Talent Team success in Belgium back in March.

"I just wanted to be picked so badly. It is the first time there has been a race for the girls at the Youth Olympics, so that will be good.

"The course is flat as a pancake but it will also be open with cross-winds, which will make it a hard race.

"The racing is aggressive in Holland so there is always a chance of a break getting away, too."

Broughton, who is still 15, admitted she had wondered whether she would be selected.

"Because this is my first year as an under-16, I thought it might be hard to get on the team," said the MG Décor all-rounder.

"It could have gone so many ways because nobody has had a clear run in the selection races. But I'm happy with the way the jump from under-14 to under-16 has gone."

Broughton believes it will be hard to pick out potential threats ahead of the competition in Utrecht.

"Our biggest rivals will probably be the Dutch and Belgians, and maybe the Australians," she said.

"It is hard to say, though, because there are so many teams that we haven't ridden against, like the Russians and Italians." Garner's victory in Lincolnshire on Saturday moved her to the top of the national series standings, just ahead of Yorkshire's Parkinson.

Despite not feeling at her best during the race, Garner timed her sprint to the line perfectly.

"I kept my powder dry and just sat in," she said.

"I did a few hard turns but really saved it for the sprint. It was quite fast coming into the finish.

"That worked well for me. I got on the right wheel, stayed out of the wind and got over the line first."

Cycling: Leicestershire duo to spearhead assault on Euro Olympics


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