BMX: Team GB's Shanaze Reade keen to emulate roommate Victoria Pendleton

 

Shanaze Reade feels she would not have been a “true Olympic champion” if she had won gold in 2008 - but the British BMX star is ready for glory at London 2012.

The 23-year-old is aiming to continue Britain's stunning cycling success by completing a career set of world, European and Olympic title this week.

Reade still harbours the win-at-all-costs mentality that ultimately cost her a medal in Beijing, when she attempted a bold overtaking manoeuvre on the last corner and crashed out.

Four years on, Reade reflects on that defeat as the best thing that could have happened to her as she prepares to emulate Victoria Pendleton, her room-mate in the athletes' village.

"I have won the worlds, I have won the Europeans but I have not won the Olympic Games," Reade said.

"That is what keeps the fire burning all the time.

"It was the best thing that happened to me in Beijing to not win that Olympics because it gave me the rules of how to be an Olympic champion.

"If I had won I wouldn't have been a true Olympic champion because I didn't have all the ingredients it took to be the champion.

"I thought I was mature enough when I was there - but I stepped away and thought 'you have a lot of growing up to do'.

"I have matured a lot more. I have experienced a lot more and I am ready now. I am ready to take on the challenge of being an Olympic champion."

More mature she may be, but that has not dulled Reade's competitive drive and she will not hesitate to risk all for gold once again.

"It comes with your personality. I train to be the best I can be," she said.

"I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to go for a gold medal.

"I don't do tricks, I just go fast.

"Since the last Olympic Games, for four years solid, I have worked so hard to achieve my goals.

"If the opportunity presents itself to go for gold, if I am in second or whatever position, I will go for that."

As part of a dominant British cycling team, Reade felt the pressure to deliver a gold medal in Beijing - now she is just inspired by the likes of Pendleton, Bradley Wiggins and Chris Hoy.

"I am mindful of the fact that everyone has been so successful," she said.

"I am sharing with Victoria Pendleton who is doing amazing out there. It makes it real.

"If another British athlete is winning - like Greg (Rutherford), Mo (Farah) and Jess (Ennis) last night - then why can't you?

"I asked Victoria how it is out there and she described it as phenomenal. I am just excited to experience the crowd' and the event."

PA

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Giants Club: After wholesale butchery of Idi Amin's regime, Uganda’s giants flourish once again

Uganda's giants are flourishing once again

After the wholesale butchery of Idi Amin's regime, elephant populations are finally recovering
The London: After 350 years, the riddle of Britain's exploding fleet is finally solved

After 350 years, the riddle of Britain's exploding fleet is finally solved

Archaeologists will recover a crucial item from the wreck of the London which could help shed more light on what happened in the vessel's final seconds
Airbus has patented a jet that could fly from London to New York in one hour

Airbus has patented a jet that could fly from London to New York in one hour

The invention involves turbojets and ramjets - a type of jet engine - and a rocket motor
10 best sun creams for kids

10 best sun creams for kids

Protect delicate and sensitive skin with products specially formulated for little ones
Tate Sensorium: New exhibition at Tate Britain invites art lovers to taste, smell and hear art

Tate Sensorium

New exhibition at Tate Britain invites art lovers to taste, smell and hear art
Ashes 2015: Nice guy Steven Finn is making up for lost time – and quickly

Nice guy Finn is making up for lost time – and quickly

He was man-of-the-match in the third Test following his recall to the England side
Ashes 2015: Remember Ashton Agar? The No 11 that nearly toppled England

Remember Ashton Agar?

The No 11 that nearly toppled England
Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks