• London Olympics 2012

Armitstead abandons double Olympic dream

ESPN staff
November 16, 2011
Lizzie Armitstead has turned her back on the velodrome © PA Photos

Lizzie Armitstead has been forced to abandon her dream of winning gold on the track and the road at London 2012.

Armitstead, who had hoped to go for gold in the omnium as well as in the road race, has made the difficult decision to turn her back on the track. Olympic regulations dictate an omnium rider must compete in the team pursuit, and Armitstead, who won world pursuit gold in 2009, admits she is unable to manage a two-pronged attack.

"Having seen the road course and the way in which the women's endurance programme is progressing on the track, it's not possible to do both," Armitstead said. "It's a difficult decision. You have to be completely committed to the team pursuit and in order to do that I would have to give up road.

"It's difficult to look at the velodrome and see the atmosphere and the stadium that I'll be missing out on, but the whole of London will be atmospheric.

"The decision was made because of the fact I didn't want to miss out on the road race. I can't commit to the team pursuit girls as much as I can commit to the road race because that's what I'm passionate about. The Mall is quite iconic as well and to race down there and cross the line in a setting like that would also be very special."

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