Peloton Watch
  Olivia Podmore ready for challenge of Junior Track World Championships  
  August 17th 2015  
  In her final year as a Junior New Zealand sprint star Olivia Podmore is looking to improve on last years sixth places in sprint and 500m time trial as she prepares to the start the 2015 UCI Junior Track World Championships in Astana, Kazakhstan on Wednesday 16th August.

Podmore's two years in the under 19 ranks have already delivered four Oceania Championship titles and nine national titles including a clean sweep of all four sprint disciplines in 2015 at the New Zealand National Championships.

When asked what she likes most about track sprinting it is an easy answer for the former BMX rider. "I love the speed, especially flying into the corners at 60 plus kilometres per hour on the track.

"My biggest influence has definitely got to be Victoria Pendleton. Her character and strength that she showed in her days of racing help me strive to be at the elite level of competition that she was once at," added Podmore.

Speaking over the weekend Podmore was ready to stat racing. "I'm feeling refreshed and ready for all of the challenges that the week of racing has to throw at me." A busy program awaits starting with the team sprint on Wednesday with Emma Cumming.

PelotonWatch: Sixth in 500m time trial and sprint at Junior Worlds last year as a first year. Were you happy with your performances?

Olivia Podmore: Heading into worlds as a first year with no previous international competition experience before, I was definitely unsure of how I was going to go; so to walk away with two 6th places and two massive personal bests I was satisfied that I was tracking in the right steps towards this year's competition

PW: Having competed at Worlds last year do you think the experience will give you an advantage this year?

OP: Competing at last years world champs has definitely made me ready for the challenges this year's build up has brought, and also left me feeling ready the competition ahead.

PW: What does it mean to represent New Zealand on the international stage?

OP: Pulling on the silver fern for my fourth international competition is an extreme honour for me. Representing New Zealand for me at the end of the day isn't just about the placing or the result it's about giving it 100% on the day and rising to the occasion no matter the circumstances.

PW: You still do some endurance events on the track and road. Do you feel this is a benefit to the sprint events on the track?

OP: I believe my endurance training and racing is what has given me the edge over my fellow competitors. Riding the miles and racing with the men gives me benefit of having a good solid base so I can handle the speed work that comes closer to competition time.

PW: There is a gap between Nationals and Worlds how important was an event like ITS Adelaide to get some racing in your legs?

OP: ITS was very important racing for me in terms of my worlds build up. Not only for the legs but also mentally. Last year I had no international competition whatsoever before the champs, so racing in Adelaide has left me feeling composed and happy with where my form sits.

PW: You won the keirin at the ANZAC Cup in a strong field including the junior world sprint champion does this give you confidence heading in to worlds?

OP: Winning the keirin left me feeling content with where my form was sitting but also left me on my toes knowing the hard work that I still had to do in training to make sure I can be competitive at this year's champs .

PW: Who do you see as your biggest competition at the World Championships this year?

OP: Everyone is competition, so it's hard to say. China was very strong at the ITS in Adelaide, also the European track championship times were very competitive so everyone's work will be cut out for them.
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