Words by Amy Sedghi
Originally part of the Wiggle Honda team from its inception in 2013, alongside notable alumni including Laura Trott, Jo Rowsell-Shand and Dani King, Barker’s return signals an ambitious year ahead for the 23-year-old from Cardiff.
“2018 for me is set to be pretty busy,” Elinor admits. “Between my winter track programme and the World champs, Commies and Euros through the spring and summer, I plan to get in as much racing as possible in with Wiggle High5.”
As part of the gold medal-winning team pursuit squad at Rio 2016, Elinor’s track career has continued to flourish. She won a third World Title in the points race in Hong Kong earlier this year, alongside two silver medals in the scratch race and Madison. As well as continuing to race on the track in 2018, with the aim of competing at Tokyo 2020, Elinor is also excited to broaden her horizons on the road.
A long solo attack almost saw Elinor win the Great Britain National Road Race on the Isle of Man in June this year, before being overhauled by the eventual winner Lizzie Deignan. Two months later though, in the BeNe Ladies Tour Elinor took her first UCI road race victory. She also took two stage wins and overall victory in the Rás na mBan in Ireland in September.
“I’m excited to step up to World Tour level and start ticking off some bucket-list races,” says Elinor, who took part in her first Road World Championships in Bergen, Norway last week, competing as part of the GB team in both the road race and the individual time trial.
Team founder and manager, Rochelle Gilmore said of the news: “I’m honoured and humbled to have her, now as an Olympic champion, choosing to rejoin Wiggle High5 in order to further support her future aspirations.”
Currently part of the Matrix Pro Cycling team, Elinor will join Wiggle High5 from 1 January 2018.