Britain’s golden cycling couple Laura and Jason Kenny are aiming to make Olympic history.
Six-time champion Jason needs just one more gold medal to become Team GB’s most decorated Olympian, with at least three chances to secure the title from Sir Chris Hoy – the team sprint, individual sprint, and keirin.
Laura already has the most golds ever among British women and has the chance to win three more medals to add to her already impressive collection of four.
Laura and Jason Kenny during the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Pic: AP
On Monday, Britain’s men’s team pursuit squad managed to qualify in fourth place for the chance to win a medal.
In the women’s team pursuit, Team GB qualified second fastest after watching Germany smash the world record.
The Kennys have spent the last 16 months with barely any competition, but have their hopes set high for their upcoming events.
“We can only focus on ourselves, but we’re in a better place than we would have been 12 months ago,” Jason said.
“We’re faster. That’s all we can do. If someone turns up and surprises us with something phenomenal, there’s not a lot we can do about that.”
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At last year’s world championships, the final major competition before lockdown, Jason and his men’s sprint teammates were well off the pace set by the Dutch, while Laura and the women’s team pursuit squad were beaten by the American team.
Laura said she considered retiring last year after breaking her shoulder in a crash at the World Cup in Canada, then her arm at the world championships weeks later.
She said: “If these Games had taken place a year ago, I would have been slightly concerned. I wouldn’t have had the preparation I wanted.
“These extra 12 months have given me time to make sure I was doing everything right, get fitter and stronger than I ever have been.”
The 29-year-old has been part of the winning team in the women’s pursuit in the last two Games as well as winning the omnium on each occasion.
A victory, in either event, this year would make her the first British woman to win gold at three separate Olympics after Jade Jones, Charlotte Dujardin and Helen Glover all missed out.
After the 2016 Rio Olympics, the couple took some time out from cycling, welcoming their son Albie in August 2017.
Laura stayed away for six months before returning to compete at the 2018 world championships, while Jason returned in late 2017.
At 33 years old, he is now in his fourth Games – 13 years after winning his first team sprint gold in 2008.
He said: “You have to be the best in the world to win the Olympics, and that hasn’t changed.
“The goal is the same.”