Peloton Watch
  Kristina Clonan knows hard work starts now after selected for Junior Track Worlds  
  March 11th 2016  
  Kristina Clonan (far right) with Ruby Roseman-Ganon (left) and Jade Haines (centre) © John Veage  
  After a three-medal haul at the Australian Track National Championships Kristina Clonan has earned a spot on the Australian team for the 2016 Junior Track World Championships in Aigle, Switzerland in June.

"It means everything!," said an ecstatic Clonan on her selection. "Being selected and representing Australia has been an ambition of mine since I started cycling.

"I am very keen to get back on the track and compete in Switzerland in July."

The road over the past four years since switching from athletics in 2013 has seen Clonan make steady process on route to representing Australia.

Having finished fifth in the omnium and individual pursuit last year, while claiming silver in the scratch race and bronze in the points race left Clonan just short of earning selection as a first year.

After starting her track season with bronze in the omnium in December, Clonan wasn't getting ahead of herself heading in to the Track National Championships in February.

"I learnt from the omnium in 2014 that a lot can change between omnium and nationals. I was quite happy with that result at omnium but I knew that I still had a lot of work to do leading up to Nationals."

Nationals were the final opportunity to impress selectors and with the experience from last year Clonan was determined to put her best foot forward.

"I had a chat to my coach, and if 2015 was any consolation, I knew that I really needed to be in the top three or four in the IP to be in the running for selection.

"Nick Formosa, my coach trained me hard in the lead up and he gave me a really clear idea of what I needed to do and how to do it," Clonan revealed.

Day two of nationals saw Clonan blast out of the start gate setting the third fastest time in individual pursuit qualifying of two minutes 27.084 seconds. A new personal best and earning her a spot in the ride for bronze in the process.

"I was very happy with that time, my pacing was a little off but I was scheduled for a 2:27," revealed Clonan who went on to claim the bronze medal in 2mins 28.078secs.

"Jade [Haines] and Ruby [Roseman-Gannon] deserved their first and second place both riding under 2:27, which is an awesome effort from both of them, and I can't wait to ride with them at Junior Worlds.

"I am quite happy with this years efforts, especially after a bit of disappointment in 2015 coming fifth in the IP," added Clonan who realises that making the team was just the first step. "The hard work is yet to come, and I'm excited for what is ahead."

It is not just Clonan's performances on the bike that have improved but her enjoyment of the sport as well. "I think I found balance in 2016, which helped me a lot and made training more enjoyable.

"In 2015 I think I got so engrossed in training and numbers that I forgot to enjoy it," explained Clonan showing experience beyond her years.

Clonan's ambitions on the road will take a back seat in 2016 with opportunities on the track presenting her the chance to race on the world stage.

"I had a few mixed emotions about Oceanias this year," explained Clonan who missed the opportunity to defend her under 19 road race title.

"It was disappointing, especially almost breaking my phone from pressing the refresh button so many times to view results, but I think what I did was best," added Clonan. "I was ready for a break so that I would be fresh for training in the lead up to worlds."

While all roads lead to the boards in 2016, Clonan is not completely forgoing the road this year. "I am doing a few NRS races in the lead up to worlds. I would like to do Nationals, but it all depends how it ties in with track as that is my main focus."
 © 2016