• Rebecca Wiasak of Australia (L) celebrates winning gold with bronze medalist Amy Cure of Australia in the Women's Individual Pursuit Final during Day Three of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships at National Velodrome on February 20, 2015 in Paris, France.
8 women have been included in the twenty-member team named by Cycling Australia for the 2016 UCI World Track Championships in London, the final dress rehearsal before August’s Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
Cycling Australia
11 Feb 2016 - 8:27 AM  UPDATED 15 Feb 2016 - 4:49 PM

“The World Championships are our last qualification event for Rio as well as the final big race opportunity to fine tune our team toward the Rio Olympics,” said Kevin Tabotta, National Performance Director, Cycling Australia.

“We have set objectives for each of the athletes and we will be looking to show strong progression in all our focus disciplines, and importantly, to secure our Rio qualification quotas for all track events. Whilst the World Championships are certainly important, Rio is naturally the ultimate goal. Our eyes are firmly set on August.

“The London velodrome is a super venue, a real cauldron packed with vocal parochial crowds and this will provide the perfect stage to rehearse and refine our strategies in high pressure conditions. That’s great practice for Rio.”

The team boasts a tremendous blend of youth and experience and is punctuated by twelve current or former world champions including reigning keirin and eleven-time champion Anna Meares (SA/QLD), plus dual reigning champion Annette Edmondson (SA).

Amy Cure (TAS) and Ashlee Ankudinoff (NSW) - who were part of the team who claimed the 2015 team pursuit world title in world record time - will line up to defend their title, as will Rebecca Wiasak (ACT) who claimed the individual pursuit honours last year.

Stephanie Morton (SA), who claimed four medals at three World Cups this summer, and three-time team sprint world champion Kaarle McCulloch (NSW), complete the sprint selections.

Rising star, Georgia Baker, 21, who enters the women’s team pursuit ranks will make her world championship debut.

Unfortunately due to illness, reigning team pursuit world champion Melissa Hoskins (WA) is not available to line up to defend the team pursuit title, however she is expected to be fully fit ahead of the Olympic selection deadline of June 27.

“Melissa’s illness is unfortunately timed, but missing the Worlds won't affect her run towards Rio and we expect her to be back, fitter than ever.

"It has however opened a door for Georgia Baker to be tested in London and Georgia has pushed her way into the team with some big improvements over the last six months.” Tabotta added.

“We have a highly experienced women’s sprint team, with the big improver being Stephanie Morton in 2016, with her silver medal in Cambridge and recording some of the fastest times of the year in the 200m and in second wheel in the team sprint.

“And while Anna Meares has had a disrupted run over past six months, she is truly back on track now with an impressive showing at last week’s Nationals. She is building well toward August”

Kaarle McCulloch

Anna Meares

Stephanie Morton

Ashlee Ankudinoff

Amy Cure

Annette Edmondson

Georgia Baker

Rebecca Wiasak