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 Tuesday, 28 January, 2003, 17:22 GMT
Cycling success in store for Wales
Nicole Cooke and Erin Hartwell
Nicole Cooke looks forward to working with Hartwell
New Wales cycling coach Erin Hartwell is targeting more medals as he settles into his new role.

The 33-year-old former Olympic medalist praised his forerunner in the role, Shane Sutton, but promised a change in emphasis.

"Shane raised the standard of the Welsh team to a new level, but we'll make a shift to the track in 2004 as there are more medals available than on the road," he said.

He sees the opening of the new Velodrome at Spytty Park, Newport, this autumn as a key element in his plans.

"It will make a far greater impact than we can currently comprehend. We will have a world-class training centre available to develop track athletes to an international standard.

Erin's Olympic medals prove that he knows what it takes to achieve success

Nicole Cooke
"We will be road-focused in 2003 with the intent of finding better racing opportunities to improve fitness and to improve results.

"This will assist us in getting better trade team opportunities for our top road cyclists whom we will use in our track endurance programmes."

Hartwell aims to place riders like Huw Pritchard, Anthony Malarczyk and Yanto Barker into better trade teams.

Nicole Cooke and Julian Winn are already with teams on the continent, and Cooke is excited at the impact Hartwell will make in Wales.

"I'm really looking forward to working with Erin," she said, "He has experience of racing at the highest level of competition and his Olympic medals prove that he knows what it takes to achieve success."

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06 Jan 03 | Cycling
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