Cycling: Villumsen heads NZ Games team

New Zealand' s Linda Villumsen. Photo / Mark Mitchell.
New Zealand' s Linda Villumsen. Photo / Mark Mitchell.

Five-time world championship medallist Linda Villumsen, double Olympic medallist Hayden Roulston and in-form Jesse Sergent will lead New Zealand's road cycling team at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games this year.

There are six named for the men's road team and five for the women's group, along with two male mountain bikers and Queenstown's Kate Fluker as the sole women's mountainbiker.

Five of the six men are riding for International Cycling Union pro tour teams, including Roulston and Sergent (Trek Factory Racing), Jack Bauer (Garmin-Sharp), George Bennett (Cannondale) and Greg Henderson (Lotto-Belisol).

For 37-year-old Henderson it will be his fourth Commonwealth Games, to sit alongside four Olympics.

Roulston is also attending his fourth Commonwealth Games to go with his two track golds at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

Villumsen, a silver medallist at Delhi four years ago, heads the women's group, which includes experienced US-based riders Joanne Kiesanowski, heading to her third Commonwealth Games, and London Olympian Rushlee Buchanan, who won her second national road championship this year and will transfer into the endurance track squad.

2012 Junior world champion Anton Cooper of Christchurch heads the mountain biking group which might have London Olympian Karen Hanlen added provided she comes through an assessment with BikeNZ's medical team.

"Medals are a target but so too is vital experience and tracking ahead of Rio 2016 and the Commonwealth Games provide just that," Bike NZ high performance boss Mark Elliott said.

New Zealand have won 82 Commonwealth Games medals since 1938.
Squad:

Men's road: Jack Bauer (Takaka), George Bennett (Nelson), Greg Henderson (Dunedin), James Oram (North Harbour), Hayden Roulston (Christchurch), Jesse Sergent (Palmerston North)

Women's road: Rushlee Buchanan (Te Awamutu), Emily Collins (Auckland), Joanne Kiesanowski (Christchurch), Reta Trotman (Christchurch), Linda Villumsen, Christchurch)
Men's mountainbike: Anton Cooper (Christchurch), Sam Gaze (Te Awamutu).
Women's mountainbike: Kate Fluker (Queenstown).

- NZ Herald

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