Peloton Watch
  Amy Roberts returns to the track chasing selection for Commonwealth Games  
  October 5th 2017  
  Amy Roberts competes in the individual pursuit at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Photo: PA Images  
  After focusing on the road for the last five years Amy Roberts returns to the track as she chases selection for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

Her strong track background and the opportunity to again represent Wales at the Commonwealth Games, having done so as a 19-year-old in 2014, motivated her to return to the boards. With the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games also on her mind.

In 2012 as a junior Roberts claimed world championship bronze in both the points race and team pursuit with Elinor Barker and Hayley Jones, two riders she hopes to team up with again on the Gold Coast as part of what is certain to be a strong Welsh team.

Roberts raced the British Madison Championships last December with her first competition of 2017 the Alkmaar three day at the end of September. Initially proving to be a shock to the system her confidence and track craft returned over the three days leaving her ready and eager to tackle the upcoming track season.

2018 will also see a change on the road with Roberts set to join Parkhotel Valkenburg as she looks for a new challenge having spent five years with Wiggle High5.

Have spent the last five years riding on the road with Wiggle High5 with and supporting some of the biggest names in the sport how have you found it?

The last five years with Wiggle High5 have really been amazing. Obviously coming into the elite scene is a big thing itself but to come into it and straight onto such a big team it was a massive learning curve. I've been really lucky to learn and grow with the team and riding with some of the biggest names in world, helping them and becoming friends, is something special.

2018 will see you change teams after signing with Parkhotel Valkenburg what was behind the change and what are you most looking forward to?

I think after five years it was time for a change, I've been riding as a domestique and really enjoyed doing so, also learning from the best. But I feel its time to try and start showing what I can do and working in a different environment. I felt Parkhotel Valkenburg was the perfect fit for this and I'm really looking forward to working with new staff and riders and seeing what we can do as a team.

Before then you are making a return to the velodrome targeting selection for the 2018 Commonwealth Games. After not racing much on the track the last few years what made you want to return and what do you think the biggest challenge will be?

Track has always been something I have done, and wanted to do again, so with the Commonwealth Games coming up next year it seemed the right time to try and see if I can get back into it. There will obviously be a lot of challenges but like I said I've always ridden the track, so it shouldn't be too long before I find my track legs again!

Raced the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014 as a 19 year old finishing top 15 in the IP, scratch and points races on the track and 12th and 13th in the time trial and road race what was the experience like? Do you think it will be beneficial as you target selection for 2018?

The experience was truly amazing, as a 19 year old it was a big deal but so much fun. There wasn't much pressure and was a time to take in what its like to be at a multi-sport event. I was also happy with my performances and was so glad I got to ride all the track and road events. Having the experience is always beneficial and I hope that's something I can take to the 2018 Games.

You followed the 2014 Commonwealth Games with World Cup gold in November 2014 where you rode with Elinor Barker, Ciara Horne and Laura Trott who were all at the Rio Olympics was there any thoughts of what if I had continued on the track?

I think at the time I had to decide if I wanted to stay with Wiggle High5 on the road, this meant taking a step away from the track. It's hard to say but it's not something that can be changed now and I'm happy with the years I have spent with the team on the road.

Lot of depth in Wales with Elinor Barker, Manon Lloyd, Ciara Horne, Megan Barker, Hayley Jones, Jess Roberts, Dani King and yourself a hard team just to be selected for?

Yes there is definitely a lot of depth, and of course will be hard to be selected but I think it's a good thing and healthy to have the competition, keeps you fighting for it.

Team pursuit has been added to the programme an event you have had considerable success in in the past is that a motivating factor?

Definitely, it's a great event and I'm so happy it's been put in the games. I feel I'm a lot stronger now than when I last rode a team pursuit and I hope this is something that can be shown. It's also great for Wales to have the event with so many girls up to be selected.

First event back on the track was Alkmaar three day at the end of September how did you find it?

It was a bit of a shock I have to say. I've literally rode the track once this year, after a handful of sessions last year before the Madison Championships so I don't think my body was quite used to it. It was a great three days though, I had fun and by the last day I started to feel more into it and was happy to get a couple results.

Heading in to track season now what will you be racing and what are your goals?

I hope to get into some of the Revolutions and maybe some more 6 Days. Just getting track back into my training and trying to prepare to be selected for the Commonwealth Games. It would also be good to get to a World Cup with Wales and see where we stand in the team pursuit.

Is your return to the track just for the Commonwealth Games or looking further ahead to Tokyo?

Looking ahead to Tokyo is definitely in my mind. Need to see how things go and if I can be good enough and prove myself in the next couple of years.
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