Rising standards left Laura Kenny feeling out of her ‘comfort zone’ on return to track

FOCUSSED: Laura Kenny, ahead of the Women's Team Pursuit final at the UCI NTrack Cycling World Cup in December. Picture: Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com
FOCUSSED: Laura Kenny, ahead of the Women's Team Pursuit final at the UCI NTrack Cycling World Cup in December. Picture: Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com
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LAURA KENNY is Great Britain’s most successful female Olympian, but she admits she had to overcome a confidence crisis upon her return to major competition after giving birth.

The 26-year-old four-time gold medallist will have 18-month-old son Albie trackside when she competes alongside husband Jason at the World Track Cycling Championships in Poland next week.

WINING FEELING AGAIN: Laura Kenny, right, and Katie Archibald celebrate winning Gold in the Women's Madison final at the Cycling World Cup in December. Picture: Alex Broadway/SWpix.com

WINING FEELING AGAIN: Laura Kenny, right, and Katie Archibald celebrate winning Gold in the Women's Madison final at the Cycling World Cup in December. Picture: Alex Broadway/SWpix.com

Kenny endured a mixed return at the European Championships in Glasgow last year and admitted she took some time to adjust to the fact that she still belonged in elite company.

Kenny said: “The standard moves on all the time and when I left the sport after Rio it continued to grow and move on.

“It meant I basically had to re-learn the whole thing. When I returned at the World Cup in Canada I felt a little bit out of my comfort zone with everything happening at full speed ahead.

“But it just takes a few events to get used to it. I was pretty average in Glasgow and that was a learning curve and a wake-up call. I’ve re-learned and moved on and I feel much stronger going to Poland.”

It just takes a few events to get used to it. I was pretty average in Glasgow and that was a learning curve and a wake-up call. I’ve re-learned and moved on and I feel much stronger going to Poland.

Laura Kenny

Kenny will compete in the team pursuit and the omnium as she continues to build towards next year’s Olympics in Tokyo.

She said: “It will be just before Albie’s third birthday so, assuming I’m selected, he will be at the stage where he is starting to understand a little bit about what mummy is doing when she goes to work.”