Elinor Barker relishing rivalry with British teammates in Glasgow

RIVALS: Wales' Elinor Barker, second from right, will be up against Great Britain teammates Dani King, Laura Trott and Joanna Rowsell in Glasgow

RIVALS: Wales' Elinor Barker, second from right, will be up against Great Britain teammates Dani King, Laura Trott and Joanna Rowsell in Glasgow

First published in Sport

WORLD champion cyclist Elinor Barker can’t wait to race against her Team GB rivals at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

The 19-year-old from Cardiff will be competing in five events in two weeks.

And racing under the Welsh flag means that Barker will be pitted against her day-to-day Great Britain’s teammates Laura Trott, Dani King, Katie Archibald and Joanna Rowsell.

Although they have raced each other in training, Barker is insistent that a competition environment will be a different test.

“Racing in training against each other is good and it gives you an indicator of where you are especially because they’re some of the best girls in the world,” she said.

“But it’ll obviously be a lot different because everyone’s not going to be completely on their game for training, whereas race day everybody’s going to be bringing their best.

“I think riding against the likes of Katie, Laura and Dani is going to be very weird because we train together every day and I’m so used to being their teammates.

“Laura, Dani and Jo in particular as we’re teammates on the track and the road so it’s just going to be bizarre racing against them. It’s going to be really weird but hopefully we can still be friends through it.”

Barker has undergone an incredible journey from junior time trial world champion on British Cycling’s Olympic Development Programme, to world champion and Olympic Podium Programme athlete.

She described the help she received as a junior from Welsh Cycling as fundamental to her success.

“I’m really glad to going back in to the Welsh environment, back with the team,” she said.

“All the staff were pretty fundamental with me getting the junior world champs title and then also moving to the seniors they were incredibly helpful and they gave me so many opportunities, so it’s nice to go back and work with them again.”

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