Marianne Vos’ road to Rio has been resurfaced. The Dutchwoman will resume training following nearly four months off the bike and a full season away from racing, with an eye toward defending her Olympic road race gold medal.
Vos, 28, suffered from overtraining and overuse injuries to her hamstring and back and has been off the bike since July.
“I’ve got good news, I can start training again,” Vos said in a video on Rabo Liv’s website. “Since July I’ve had to rest and recover. After a couple of medical tests the medics said I can start easy training again.”
The Rio de Janeiro road race course is mountainous and well-suited to Vos’ all-around strength. If she can find her old form, the three-time winner of the women’s Giro will come into the next summer Olympics as a top favorite.
“Rio is in my mind. It’s an objective, but the first main thing is to get myself ready for races,” Vos said. “If I’m fit, we’ll see if I’m going to make Rio. Indeed, that will be a fantastic goal to reach.”
Though Vos is back on the bike, she will not begin racing anytime soon, ruling out a return in time for cyclocross season, where she holds seven world championship titles.
“It’s going to be too much of a rush to get it into the cyclocross season. I need a couple months to get my base very well and doing my base training, so unfortunately no cyclocross races,” she said. “Of course I miss it very much, I’ve been out of the road season already, and now I miss another season. But the most important thing for me now is to get fit and 100 percent race ready instead of rush the buildup.”
“The team is working with me to plan this very well and not to rush in this buildup, because that’s dangerous of course after a long rest period,” she said. “But I’m looking forward to starting again and to be fit to race next year.”