Villumsen to base herself in New Zealand

The New Zealand cyclist Linda Villumsen has set her sights on the 2016 Rio Olympics but plans to take a different path to climb the podium in four years time.

The 27-year-old, who finished fourth in the time trial in London, wants to base herself in New Zealand for the foreseeable future.

Villumsen, the Danish-born New Zealand citizen, has withdrawn from the Australian-based Orica-AIS women's team for next year.

After seven years on the roads of Europe riding for several professional teams, Villumsen wants a settled base in her adopted country.

The four-time world championship medallist and Commonwealth Games silver medallist has her sights firmly fixed on further success on the world stage, including the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and ultimately the 2016 Olympics.

She believes, with prudent planning, she can remain competitive internationally without reverting back to the long and lonely life as a European-based rider.

Villumsen's first mission is the Elite Road Nationals in Christchurch next month, although by her own admission she will be far from race-fit as she begins her long training programme aimed at next year's world championships in Italy next September.

Next story in Sport: Federer to play less next year