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Nikki Harris' sole aim in Rio is to help Lizzie Armitstead win gold in road race

Nikki Harris' sole aim in Rio is to help Lizzie Armitstead win gold in road race
By PA Sport

06/08/2016 at 13:44Updated 06/08/2016 at 13:49

Nikki Harris has no chance of an Olympic medal, despite competing in a team sport.

Nikki Harris has no chance of an Olympic medal, despite competing in a team sport.

The 29-year-old has been selected as a domestique, to ride Sunday's Rio road race alongside Emma Pooley and in the service of world champion Lizzie Armitstead.

"I don't really see myself as ever being able to get a medal at the Olympics," Harris said.

"The reason I'm going there is to help other people do that. I want to be able to finish my race having done that job and hopefully with Lizzie winning the gold. That would be the cherry on top."

Armitstead was given an Olympic reprieve over three whereabouts 'failures' when the first was declared void by the Court of Abritration for Sport.

She will be aiming to upgrade the silver she won at London 2012 in Rio, with the support of Harris, her Boels-Dolmans team-mate.

Harris was selected ahead of Wiggle-High5 rider Dani King, a London 2012 gold medallist on the track in the team pursuit.

King was frustrated and appealed against the decision, unsuccessfully.

It was not unsettling for Harris.

She said: "Not at all. I fully deserve my spot and I did everything I could to be on this team.

"It's only a good thing that there's so many girls that are really strong and everyone is fighting for the Olympic spots.

"Obviously Dani's not going to be happy, because she got the short straw.

"There are so many strong girls I can't imagine it was easy for the selectors in those meetings.

"The main role I'm going to do is to do a team job for Lizzie.

"That's the role I've been doing in every single race this year on the road, not just for Lizzie, but for all my other team-mates as well.

"I feel really confident with that. I'll give everything to sacrifice my race for my team-mates.

"My job will be in the first 90 to 100-kilometres, helping Lizzie stay at the front, get over the cobbles, making Lizzie do the least amount of work possible, so she's fresh for the final 20km.

"Hopefully we can save her some energy so she's got some fresh legs - or as fresh as she can be on that course - at the end of the race."

As for her own Olympic aspirations, Harris would rely on cyclo-cross one day entering the Winter Games.

The multiple British cyclo-cross champion said: "It would be amazing to have an Olympics cyclo-cross. Then I'd definitely be going for the win."

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