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Glaesser, Nyhaug eye the Olympic podium

Cyclists gear up with several competitions ahead of Rio

Jasmin Glaesser may have made the podium during the London Olympics but she said she is looking to improve on her performance when she attends the 2016 Games in Rio next month. 

The Coquitlam cyclist and 2012 bronze medalist was nominated Wednesday by the Canadian Olympic Committee and Cycling Canada to represent her country in Brazil. She will join fellow Coquitlam BMXer Tory Nyhaug on the team, along with 17 other athletes when the event is held between Aug. 5 and 21. 

“We have proven ourselves to be contenders for the top step of the podium at every competition we have attended since London 2012 and I fully expect us to be ready to challenge for the gold in Rio,” she said.

Glaesser was new to the Canadian national team when she took third place in the indoor cycling event in 2012, just edging Australia off the podium by a tenth of a second. 

Last year, she snagged several medals at the 2015 Pan Am Games, taking gold in the women’s pursuit, silver in the women’s omnium and silver in the road time trial.

She will now get ready for a handful of various pre-Games preparation camps and competitions in the coming months, including the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships, Track Olympic training and the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup. 

“Though most will only see the four riders on the start line, this team and our ultimate performance will be a testament to the relentless dedication on the part of our staff and partners that have worked tirelessly to provide us with all the tools and resources necessary to pursue our goals,” she said. “I couldn’t be more proud to work with such a phenomenal team on and off the bike and it’s because of you that we will be able to take to the boards in Rio confident, knowing that our best is yet to come.”

Meanwhile, BMX rider Nyhaug was also nominated for the Canadian cycling team. 

Since missing the semifinals in London four years ago, he has piled up medals, winning gold at the Pan Am Games last year and silver at the world championships in Rotterdam in 2014. 

His showing at the Pan Am Games was particularly impressive after coming off of a serious foot injury in the months leading up to the event. 

Jacques Landry, the high performance cycling director and head coach, said a lot of work has gone into ensuring Canada’s cyclists have a good showing in Rio. 

“I’m very proud of what our athletes, coaches and staff have achieved in securing the highest number of Olympic quota spots for cycling in recent years,” he said. “Thanks to our more centralized programs, where we’ve been able to optimize our daily training environments, I am confident that we have the systems and processes in place that will put our cyclists in the best possible position to generate top Olympic performances.”