John Archibald hopes nationals can earn him World Championship place

John Archibald (left) will be going for more glory at this weekend's National Track Championships (pic by SWpix.com)
John Archibald (left) will be going for more glory at this weekend's National Track Championships (pic by SWpix.com)

John Archibald faces his first big test of the year when he tackles this weekend’s National Track Championships in Manchester.

But the 28-year-old is hoping to pass with flying colours and put himself in prime position for selection for February’s World Championships in Poland.

Last year’s nationals saw John win the points race and take individual pursuit bronze - and start a remarkable year which brought him Commonwealth Games individual pursuit silver, World Cup team pursuit gold and an unofficial world record for the fastest ever sea level individual pursuit ride.

He’s riding both individual and team pursuit (with his Huub Wattbike team) at Manchester and accepts that he’s gone from a relative unknown to one of the favourites.

He said: “To be honest I’d really like to win both.

“With the individual pursuit I’m going into it as best ranked favourite for it so it’s about making sure I don’t blow it up.

“Ideally I’d like to have two good performances in the qualifying and the final, rather than just one good race and then blowing up and having a poor final.”

Despite John’s success he’s still not part of the official Great Britain performance squad which means he would need special dispensation to ride the worlds as a guest.

But he knows that adding a national title to his world record would more than strengthen his case.

He said: “The pinnacle of what I can achieve as an individual pursuiter is the World Championships.

“It’s not an Olympic event any more, it got removed after 2008, so the World Championship is the highest level you can compete at.

“Anyone within the GB team gets automatically nominated but for anyone outside the GB team you fill in a form and state your case on why you feel should be selected as a guest rider.

“You kind of think that if you’ve done the world’s fastest time and are showing consistent form, hopefully they’ll take a strong look at me.”

John will be joined in Manchester by sister Katie who will as usual be doing “a whole load of things” including individual pursuit, sprint, scratch and points races.