Shanaze Reade says Worlds are harder to win than Olympics

More than 60 riders will take part in the BMX World Championships in Birminghamexternal-link this weekend.

The competition has been described by Team GB medal hope Shanaze Reade as "harder to win than the Olympics."external-link

The meeting over four days, 24-27 May, includes a two-person Great Britain women's elite team in the shape of Reade and Sheffield's Abbie Taylor.

Four British men - Liam Phillips, Grant Hill, Curtis Manaton and Tre Whyte - complete the line-up.

For many, the event at the National Indoor Arenaexternal-link provides the final major competitive test before the London Olympics. It is the first time the championships have been held in Britain since Brighton staged the competition in 1996.

"A World Championships can sometimes mean more than an Olympic Games," Reade, 23, explained.

"The Worlds as an event itself are harder to win than the Olympics and also you come away with the [Union Cycliste Internationale] jersey.

"You have the most people competing there. At the Olympics you only have 16 women and 32 men and at the World Championships it can be 60-plus women and 100-plus men that can enter."

Reade's main rivals, apart from team-mate Taylor, will include world champion Mariana Pajon of Colombia and 2011 runner-up Sarah Walker of New Zealand.

Phillips, 19, knows that world champion Joris Daudet of France and Olympic champion Maris Strombergs of Latvia are likely to be his toughest competition.

"There are a lot of other guys out there who are going extremely well and will also turn up to the Worlds and look to put in a great performance," Phillips acknowledged.external-link

"As far as I'm concerned it's huge to be racing in Birmingham in front of a home crowd but I'm looking to go there and firstly enjoy the race.

"I just want to put in some strong laps and see what happens - all I can do is go out there and ride like I have been in training and I feel like if I do that I should do myself proud."

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