Incredible comeback set to continue for Norfolk cyclist as World Championships begin
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The amazing recovery of Norfolk cyclist Victoria Williamson moves up a gear today, when she defies the odds to take a place on the start line at the Track World Championships in Poland.
The former Norwich School for Girls pupil returned to competitive action last month, just over three years after suffering career-threatening injuries when racing in Holland.
The 25-year-old fractured her neck and back, dislocated her pelvis and sustained a deep cut to her right flank, causing her to miss the 2016 Olympics.
Williamson returned to action last month at a UCI Track Cycling World Cup meeting in Hong Kong, before winning a bronze medal at the National Track Championships in Manchester, alongside Lusia Steele in the women’s team sprint.
Selection for the World Championships followed from British Cycling and the action begins in Pruszków this afternoon, with qualifying for the women’s team sprint due to begin at around 6pm UK time.
“Expectations-wise, I’ve nothing set in my head as I just want to lay down a good performance,” said Williamson, who is targeting the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
“If I can get a personal best and deliver our absolute best it’s another step to Tokyo.”
FROM THE ARCHIVES: Williamson determined to recover from injuries to make Team GB return
Originally from Hevingham but now based in Manchester, Williamson won team sprint bronze at the 2013 Track World Championships in Belarus, partnering Becky James.
Selected alongside Katy Marchant and Lauren Bate for the women’s sprint team, the event has added significance as it was the only track cycling event Great Britain failed to qualify for at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
“I’d crashed just before qualifying for Rio, but we now have a really strong group of girls pushing one another and I’m confident we’ll qualify (for Tokyo),” Williamson added, speaking to the BBC.
“Obviously it’s a dream for me to compete for Great Britain at the Olympics and it would be perfect to finish off this stint of hard work. Whatever I achieve now is a win already.”
Williamson is also due to compete in the individual 500m time trial – in which she won silver at the 2011 Junior Track World Championships – on Saturday.
• Action from the event is being streamed on the BBC website and red button service.