John and Katie Archibald in Scotland team for Gold Coast

John Archibald at the recent Scottish Cycling Roll of Honour Awards (pic courtesy of Pammie Ball Photography).
John Archibald at the recent Scottish Cycling Roll of Honour Awards (pic courtesy of Pammie Ball Photography).

Milngavie cyclist John Archibald has been to join sister Katie in the Team Scotland squad for the Commonwealth Games later this year.

The 26-year-old switched emphasis from the track to the road last year in an effort to gain selection for the trip to Gold Coast.

Katie Archibald in full flight

Katie Archibald in full flight

The selection caps a remarkable rise for Archibald whose 2017 achievements were celebrated at Scottish Cycling’s recent Roll of Honour ceremony.

During the year he won a host of individual and team time trial and pursuit titles.

He also broke the long-standing Scottish 25-mile record held by the legendary Graeme Obree.

And 2018 started with a bang as John took three medals at the recent British track championships, including individual gold in the points race.

Now he’s earned a place on the plane to Australia where he hopes to race both on the track and the road, despite the huge differences involved in training for them.

He said: “I’m hoping to do possibly all the track events - the individual pursuit, the scratch race and the points race. And the likelihood is there will be road race spots as well, for the road time trial and the road race.

“The longest race I will do on the track is 35 minutes whereas on the road it’s either an hour-long time trial or a five-hour road race.

“It’s pretty drastic in terms of what you prepare for so I’ve gone into this with the mindset of doing the best I can on the track, preparing with the high peak end efforts with four minutes being the main one for the individual pursuit.

“The road race is kind of in the back of my mind, but you do definitely prepare for it quite differently.”

“The event I can control the most is the individual pursuit because it’s just a time trial against the clock and if I prepare properly I know what I can do.

“I’m going in there with the aim of trying to get close to four minutes 15 seconds, which would put me in the mix but it’s not going to win it, the idea being that I go, I do a solid time there and in the bunch events anything can happen on the day and you can maybe sneak a medal.”

Meanwhile Katie (23) will be out to add to her remarkable major medal tally when she heads for Australia’s Gold Coast in April.

Katie took bronze in the points race in Glasgow four years ago, but has since amassed a glittering collection of gongs.

So far she has collected three world medals, including two golds, no fewer than 12 European medals (10 of them gold) and of course team pursuit gold from the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

John said that while Katie will be busy “doing events left, right and centre” it will be a help having her there during the competition.

He said: “At the British track championships [they won seven medals between them at last month’s competition] it was very unusual having us there for a competition at the same time because that seldom happens.

“We’re not close in terms of spending lots of time together encouraging each other.

“But when you see each other perform it definitely has a motivational factor to it.”