Sir Chris Hoy’s Olympic Games looks likely to get off to a relatively slow start this afternoon, with Britain outsiders for gold in the team sprint.
Despite being reigning Olympic champions, Team GB are 9/2 in the betting behind both Germany and France who are priced at 5/4 and 6/4 respectively.
Hoy, alongside Jason Kenny, won team Sprint gold in Beijing but, in the four years since, they have struggled to build on their victory – and their hopes have been dented even further with both France and Germany manipulating the rules to get an extra sprinter in their squad.
France started Mickael Borgain in the road race but withdrew him just three kilometres into the race, while Germany’s Robert Forstemann will ride for Germany in the mountain bike event.
Because of the rules, they are now both able to take part in the team sprint event for their respective countries, giving them a huge advantage during the three rounds in which recovery time is extremely limited.
Hoy voiced his disapproval to the Daily Record, saying: “France and Germany have picked riders in other events they can move across to the sprint, which makes a mockery of the rules.”
Hoy and Jason Kenny won team sprint gold in Beijing but are partnered this time by newcomer Philip Hindes, with the trio unlikely to usurp current world record holders Germany.
Britain have finished behind the Germans in two of the last three World Championships and Hoy’s men look unlikely to end that trend in London this afternoon, with the Germans well worth backing at 5/4.
Hoy’s wait for a fifth Olympic gold medal looks like continuing for a couple of days yet.