Rio 2016: Triathlete Vicky Holland eyes success on biggest stage

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Holland eyes Olympic triathlon medal

British triathlete Vicky Holland says her Commonwealth bronze transformed her thinking ahead of the 2016 Olympics.

The 30-year-old crashed her bike and finished 26th at London 2012, but she bounced back to win an individual bronze in Glasgow two years later.

"That race changed what I thought I could do," she told BBC Points West.

"I have reset my boundaries and where I think I can go to. London was the experience of a lifetime but now I have definitely moved my level on again."

She continued: "Until you put yourself on a podium at a bigger race, it's actually really hard to fill yourself with confidence."

Holland also won gold in the mixed team relay event in Glasgow, alongside Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee and Jodie Stimpson.

She trains full-time alongside the Brownlee brothers, having relocated to Leeds.

As a result, Holland rarely spends time back at her parents' home in the West Country, but she has been out on the bike in the area to test herself against the terrain.

"It is nice scenery [in Gloucestershire], it's a beautiful area and it's good to incorporate some hill reps in my training as it's going to be hilly in Rio," said Holland, who has readied herself for the expected tricky conditions in South America.

"We raced in Rio last year at the same time of year so we know there will be humidity to deal with. We will be fully adapted to whatever is thrown our way."

Vicky Holland
Holland, left, celebrates winning gold in the mixed team relay at the 2014 Commonwealth Games

Holland believes the Brownlee brothers, who both won individual medals at London 2012, have played an enormous part in boosting triathlon's popularity and status.

"I do not think it can be underestimated what Alistair and Jonathan have done for our sport," she said.

"They helped put triathlon on the map on a worldwide scale and what they achieved at the Olympic Games in London has just exploded our sport."

Holland's attention is fixed on the Olympics, while some of her rivals still have work to do to qualify.

She added: "It is all about one day on 20 August. That will be the focus and I will do everything I can to be in the best shape possible.

"I am excited to put myself in a position where I am hoping to bring home a medal. I am looking forward to standing on that start line knowing I have done everything I can over the last nine months.

"I do not think I have reached my real peak yet and I think there may be a little more to come."

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