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Page last updated at 15:08 GMT, Thursday, 10 February 2011

Sarah Storey begins quest for her double Olympic bid

Track World Cup, Manchester
Venue: Manchester Velodrome Dates: 18-20 February
Coverage: Watch live on BBC red button and online (UK only); listen on 5 live sports extra

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Storey targets London 2012 Games double

Manchester cyclist Sarah Storey is to embark on the first step to qualify for both the Olympic Games and Paralympics at London 2012.

The 33-year-old will compete at the Track World Cup in Manchester aiming for one of the six GB places.

Storey has raced able-bodied rivals on the road, at national championships and the Commonwealth Games.

She has won five Paralympic golds over four Games in the pool, adding two golds on the bike in Beijing in 2008.

After a chronic ear problem forced Storey to retire from swimming, she at first doubted whether she would even be eligible to compete at the on a bike at the Paralympics.

"I was a bit dubious on whether I was even a classifiable athlete," she said. "What's one hand missing when you're on a bike?

"It wasn't until a few months down the line I was convinced of that and agreed to be classified. There's a big contribution from your upper body."

I'm getting to compete alongside Rebecca Romero now, which is just phenomenal."

Sarah Storey

In Manchester, she will go up against Lizzie Armitstead, Katie Colclough, Claire Galloway, Wendy Houvenaghel, Dani King, Rebecca Romero, Joanna Rowsell and Laura Trott, aiming to be part of two teams of three riders.

"We've got a fantastic array of talent and huge strength in depth," she added. "It just spurs you on because there's no one person better than anyone else.

"It's strange sometimes when you're in a line-up and you think I'm the Paralympic champion and Becs Romero is the Olympic champion in the same event.

"I'm getting to compete alongside her now, which is just phenomenal."

Although she wants to compete at the Olympics, Storey has always prioritised the Paralympics and will compete at the Para-cycling Track World Championships next month.

"I'm in the fortunate position that I've got dual nationality as it were," she said. "And I can explore team pursuit and have the blessing of the Paralympics side of the sport to come back and hopefully be a better athlete because of it.

"It's going to be good to find out. You never know unless you try."



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