The riders to watch at the World Championships

The riders to watch at the World Championships

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Tom Pidcock
Britain’s Tom Pidcock will be one of the main attractions in the cross country mountain bike competition
Venues: Glasgow and across Scotland Dates: 3-13 August
Coverage: Watch live on BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, BBC Sport website and app.

The first combined UCI Cycling World Championships begin on Thursday at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow.

The 11-day event, which will be shown live on the BBC, ends on 13 August.

Around 2,700 riders will compete for rainbow jerseys across seven disciplines with more than 200 world titles on the line.

Road racing, time trials, track, BMX, mountain bike, indoor cycling and para-cycling – which is fully integrated for the first time – are all included.

Only cyclo-cross, which took place in the Netherlands in February, is missing from a condensed schedule.

But which British riders are likely to shine? What exactly is the Gran Fondo? And who are the other stars of the sport and the races to watch in Scotland?

BBC Sport looks at what is being billed as the biggest multi-discipline cycling event ever.

Archibald in focus on home soil

Katie Archibald
Katie Archibald is a four-time world champion

Local favourite and two-time Olympic champion Katie Archibald is poised to take centre stage when the action gets under way on the track as she goes for three world titles in the team pursuit, madison and omnium.

Current points race world champion Neah Evans will also be looking to impress as Great Britain’s track cyclists debut a new cutting-edge Hope-Lotus bike they intend to ride to Olympic glory in Paris in 2024.

Olympic room-mates Elinor Barker and Katy Marchant both compete in their first world championships since giving birth to sons in 2022.

Meanwhile Jack Carlin, who took a silver and bronze at Tokyo 2020, will be looking to add a first gold medal to his collection of six at world or Olympic level.

There will be high expectations on a para-track squad containing 16-time world champion Neil Fachie, while Jody Cundy will attempt to win a 14th consecutive kilo world title.

Tandem stoker Lora Fachie will make her return to the track – after the birth of her son last year – alongside pilot Corrine Hall, while the multi-talented Kadeena Cox will also look to add to her burgeoning medal collection across para-athletics and para-cycling.

Thomas & Pogacar among road royalty in Glasgow

The 2018 Tour de France winner and two-time Olympic gold medallist Geraint Thomas leads British hopes in the men’s time trial on 11 August.

A day earlier, Lizzie Holden will hope to replicate this year’s national success on an international stage in the women’s race.

Two-time Tour de France winner Tadej Pogacar will compete in the men’s elite road race which takes place over a 271.1km route from Edinburgh to Glasgow that contains one notable climb, Crow Road, before reaching a technical circuit in Glasgow city centre.

Tadej Pogacar
Slovenia’s Tadej Pogacar is regarded as one of the best road race riders in the world

That is likely to suit reigning champion Remco Evenepoel and fellow Belgian Wout van Aert.

British national champion Fred Wright will also have to contend with the two-time French winner Julian Alaphilippe and the Dutch Classics specialist Mathieu van der Poel on 6 August.

There is a full complement of the best female road cyclists to bring down the curtain on the event on 13 August.

Tour de France Femmes winner Demi Vollering heads an impressive cast, with Annemiek van Vleuten, Marianne Vos, Lotte Kopecky and Britain’s Lizzie Deignan, the 2015 winner, all scheduled to battle it out over a 154.1km course that begins in Loch Lomond and culminates with six loops of Glasgow city centre.

Britain’s Dame Sarah Storey will also target a 17th road world title and 42nd overall when she contests both the women’s C5 time trial and road race in Dumfries and Galloway.

GB’s para-road squad also contains four current world champions including the tandem pairing of Sophie Unwin and Jenny Holl, Fin Graham (MC3) and women’s C1 time trial and road race world champion Fran Brown.

Meanwhile, the Gran Fondo, which means ‘big ride’ in Italian, will see thousands of cyclists take part in mass participation events around Highland Perthshire on Friday.

The larger route will see competitors travel 160.3km and the shorter distance will be 85.7km with an individual time trial in Dundee also taking place over 22.8km on Monday, 7 August.

Pidcock adjusts his sights

Having finished 13th on the road in this year’s gruelling Tour de France, Britain’s Tom Pidcock turns his attention back to the mountain bike.

The Olympic gold medallist heads to picturesque Glentress Forest, south of Edinburgh, along with 2021 world champion Evie Richards, for the cross-country races taking place between 8 and 12 August.

Junior world winner Jordan Williams and Rachel Atherton, who is looking to take her seventh world crown, will ride for rainbow jerseys in the downhill events being held in Fort William from 3 to 5 August.

GB’s BMX racing and freestyle squads include Olympic champions Beth Shriever and Charlotte Worthington as well as Olympic and world championship silver medallist Kye Whyte.

Olympic bronze medallist Declan Brooks and newly crowned European champion Kieran Reilly are also taking part with aspirations of claiming a medal.

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