Whatever the outcome, the parents of Hawke's Bay cyclist Regan Gough were jetting off to Rio next month after booking their flights not long before Christmas.

Penny and Dean Gough, of Waipukurau, weren't about to leave anything to chance but the other way to deduce that is perhaps the parent's perception of their talented son's passion and dedication over the years, after Regan was named in the 20-strong New Zealand team to compete in track races at the Rio Olympics in Brazil.

"We just had to take that risk and it's paid off," Penny said last night but emphasised there was no pressure on Regan whatsoever to put himself in an awkward position to go to Rio because they had told him they needed "to make a call" otherwise they had no hope of booking anything this close to one of sport's biggest stages in the world.

"We still would have been going to Rio because it would still have been an amazing experience to be in an Olympics city so now that Regan's selected it's a bigger bonus for us," she said, revealing they would jet off on August 2 in time to watch the road race on August 6 before soaking up the electric atmosphere of track cycling on August 11-12.


The 19-year-old yesterday arrived in Bordeaux, France, for another fortnight of ongoing preparations for road and track racing with the New Zealand contingent. They were in Belgium for the previous three weeks with seven other riders.

While still a junior, Regan was a member of the Kiwis' gold medal-winning 4000m team pursuit team at the elite world championship in Paris in February last year.

That had prompted his proud father, who was among the spectators in Paris, to declare Regan had booked his ticket to Rio with that sizzling pursuit performance which yielded New Zealand's first gold at the UCI Track World Championship.

NZ endurance coach Tim Carswell had only informed Regan of his inclusion in the medal-winning team 12 hours before the final after double Olympian Marc Ryan picked up a niggly back injury after the semifinals.

Penny last night said as parents they were pleased he had achieved his childhood dream of making the Olympics.

"It's absolutely awesome. He's worked so hard. It's something along the lines of a lifetime dream because he's talked about it as long as he's been racing.

"He hasn't been going on and on about it but he's just been setting his sights on where he was wanting to go with it."

Penny said her son was one of the younger competitors in the Olympic equation for his sport.


"He gave it his all just like all the other boys," she said, adding it was up to the coaches and selectors now to decide what best suited his mould.

The most successful junior track cyclist in the history of New Zealand cycling, the former Central Hawke's Bay College pupil had collected gold and silver medals at last year's elite track nationals.

The multiple Hawke's Bay/CHB senior and junior sportsperson of the year winner follows in the footsteps of an older cousin, Westley Gough, also of Waipukurau, to have represented the country at Olympics.

Penny said when they briefly got in touch with Gough on Saturday the teenager had "mixed emotions" about his selection.

"He was rapt he had been selected but disappointed his two best mates had missed out so it was all pretty emotional for him, I guess," she said, after Alex Frame, of Canterbury, and Nick Kergozou, of Southland, didn't make the muster.