Ahead of this month’s European Games in Minsk, track cyclist Ryan Owens is hoping his change in the Team Sprint order will result in more medals, just as it did on the Gold Coast in 2018.
After losing regular Team GB teammate Jack Carlin to his native Scotland for the Commonwealth Games, Ryan was promoted from his usual man two spot in the Team Sprint to the unfamiliar role of man one.
“That was the first run out I’d had in the Man One position in a big competition,” Ryan reflected.
“And from there on out I have continued in that position. So, for the whole last World Cup season, the European Championships and the World Championships this year I have been riding in the Man One position, and I’m looking forward to seeing that progress.
“There’s a lot of competition within our team, there’s five or six guys going for three spots. But in terms of my own physiological strength, man one is definitely the strongest position for me and it’s where I’ve been able to produce my best performances for the team so far.
“Hopefully I can continue to develop on that, but it was a promising first year and I’d like to keep that form going onto the European Games.”
The European Games in Minsk will be a key moment in the team’s preparations for the Tokyo Olympics, and with just over a year to go it will provide the perfect opportunity to see just how well they are progressing.
“We would like to have a confidence-boosting ride and a good result in Minsk, which would give us some nice form to build on.
“This really is the first big marker this summer which is going to set off a chain reaction going forward all the way until the Tokyo Olympics.
“The Gold Coast was one of the best events I’ve ever done, just because of the atmosphere and the result we achieved, so if we can achieve something similar at the European Games that would be fantastic.”