Becky James targets Rio 2016 after cancer scare

RIO TARGET: World champion Becky James was ruled out of Commonwealth Games after cancer scare

DISAPPOINTED: Rachel James, Becky's older sister, missed out on a medal in Glasgow

First published in Sport
Last updated
South Wales Argus: Photograph of the Author by

DOUBLE world champion cyclist Becky James is determined to bounce back from a cancer scare that ruled her out of Glasgow 2014 and she’s already targeting Rio 2016.

James was at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome yesterday to watch her older sister Rachel compete in the Commonwealth Games and wishing she was out on the track.

Abergavenny ace Becky missed the Games due to a knee injury after a cancer scare but she knows that her health has to come first.

“The doctor said to me if I had waited another year it could have been completely different,” she said. “It makes you think about things in a very different way.

“It was a really hard decision. In my personal opinion the Commonwealth Games are a major thing.

“For me in Delhi in 2010 it was like an Olympics. I was 18 and it was my breakthrough season. Plus it’s only once every four years you get to wear the Wales kit.

“I thought I could be fitter and faster and stronger this time and Glasgow was my biggest target for the season, but it just hasn’t worked out.

“I have been thinking long term, and thinking about the Olympic Games in Rio in 2016; this drives me even more.

“I missed out on the London Olympics and now it’s even worse with Glasgow. But it’s driving me even more.”

Becky watched Rachel finish sixth as the pilot for visually impaired rider Rhiannon Henry in the 1km time trial B tandem race in Glasgow yesterday.

“I’m loving the atmosphere here and it is great watching but I’d 100 per cent much rather be out there competing,” she told the Argus.

“The Glasgow crowds are brilliant and this is a magnificent arena but it’s just one of those things.

“I had to accept that it wasn’t to be and it’s onwards and upwards for me now.

“I’m in the middle of a rehab program at the moment, working on my knee and it’s all going well.

“I’m not back on my bike yet but hopefully I can do that soon.

“I’m not rushing it though – that’s why my knee flared up so much, because I was so desperate to take part here.”

Becky backed sister Rachel to bounce back as well after her sixth place finish yesterday and a counting error in the sprint event earlier in the week.

“She made a mistake in the sprint and it’s something we all do at some stage in our career,” said Becky.

“It’s not the stage you want to do it on but she’ll learn from that.

“She’s beating herself up about it but it’s just one of those things and I’m sure she’ll come back stronger.”

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