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By Agence France Presse
Great Britain’s cyclists are planning a gold-medal spree at the Beijing Olympics.
Defending Olympic champions Bradley Wiggins and Chris Hoy are the leading contenders among a 25-strong team harboring realistic gold-medal hopes in six disciplines.
Britain’s cyclists impressed in Athens four years ago when Wiggins and Hoy won gold, the men’s pursuit team secured silver and Wiggins also won a bronze in the men’s Madison alongside Rob Hayles. But the world’s top-ranked track cycling team will arrive in China stronger than ever, according to team chief Dave Brailsford.
This time, Wiggins and Hoy are joined on the gold-medal trail by the likes of Vicky Pendleton, Rebecca Romero and recent Tour de France sensation Mark Cavendish.
“The difference between now and four years ago is unbelievable,” Brailsford said. “This group of riders is the best we have ever assembled, without a doubt.
“We are well set. We are not overconfident, but we are right to go – we are right to race. We would love to start tomorrow.
“There is a nominated, stated target of six medals, but we see that as a benchmark. It will take a good team to beat us. The rest of the world will have to be right on song and challenge if they want medals.
“We are not going to Beijing to be on the second or third step – we are going there to be on the top step.
“We are expecting it to be difficult out there, and the challenge is for us to raise our game. No Olympic medal is ever given away.”