Cycling-British medal hope Archibald ruled out of Paris after freak accident

  • Cycling
  • Thursday, 20 Jun 2024

FILE PHOTO: Cycling - UCI World Championships 2023 - Emirates Arena, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain - August 4, 2023 Britain's Katie Archibald prepares ahead of the women's elite team pursuit qualification REUTERS/Matthew Childs/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) -British track cyclist Katie Archibald will miss the Paris Olympics after breaking a leg in a freak garden accident, she said on Thursday.

The 30-year-old explained on Instagram that she had tripped over a step on Tuesday and dislocated her ankle, breaking her tibia and fibula and ripping two ligaments off the bone.

"Had surgery yesterday to pin the bones back together and reattach the ligaments," she said. "Then hopefully this afternoon I'll be going home.

"A hundred apologies for what this means for the Olympic team, which I've been told won't involve me," she added. "I'm still processing that bit of news, but thought I better confirm it publicly instead of leaving it to the grapevine."

Archibald, five times a world champion, won team pursuit gold at Rio de Janeiro in 2016 and Madison gold at the delayed Tokyo Olympics in 2021.

She had targeted three golds in Paris in the team pursuit, Madison and omnium.

Britain's Olympic cycling squad is due to be announced on Monday. The Paris Games run from July 26 to Aug. 11.

"We share in Katie’s heartbreak over her injury, and the cruel manner in which she has been denied the chance to ride for the medals she so coveted in Paris," British Cycling said in a statement.

"Our focus is now on providing Katie with the best possible support as she begins her recovery, and we know that the whole cycling community will be right behind her for every step."

Archibald has had a tough time since Tokyo, missing the 2022 Commonwealth Games after being hit by a car and injuring her ankles. She had broken her collarbone at a World Cup event a month earlier.

That same year she suffered tragedy when her partner and mountain bike rider Rab Wardell died of a cardiac arrest.

Archibald's career was closely tied to that of team mate and five-times Olympic champion Laura Kenny, Britain's most decorated female Olympian, who retired in March.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Ken Ferris)

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