Hoy set to get back on track Down Under after trip to hospital with 'grim' stomach virus
21:39 GMT, 11 December 2012
Six-time Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy will resume training this week after being hospitalised for 24 hours last weekend with a severe stomach virus.
The 36-year-old is currently training with a selection of British cyclists in Perth, Western Australia, as he considers whether to continue on until the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
The Scot arrived early last week and began to feel progressively worse with gastrointestinal problems before he was taken to hospital in Subiaco, Perth, on Saturday.
Weighing up his future: Sir Chris Hoy is in training in Perth, Western Australia
Hoy, one of 12 on the shortlist for BBC Sports Personality of the Year, was discharged on Sunday after being given rehydration treatment and medication and he returned to the gym for a light session today.
'I'm glad to be getting better and almost feel back to normal now after a pretty grim few days,' Hoy, who is taking part in the Rotterdam Six Day event from January 3 to 8, said on his website.
'It's always frustrating when you're on a training camp and you can't train if you're injured or unwell.
'This is the first block of serious training I've done since the Games, but it could've happened at a far worse stage of the season though so it's not too much of a problem.
'It'll be good to get a solid couple of weeks training in before Christmas, and I'm really looking forward to racing in the first week of January in Rotterdam.'
Hoy added on his Twitter page: 'Had a rough weekend with a stomach virus, including a night in the hospital. Pleased to say I'm on the mend and back training now.'
Meanwhile, a World Series Cycling project featuring 10 grand prix races across the globe could be in place as soon as 2014.
What a summer: Hoy is back in full training for the first time since the Olympics
The group are optimistic of successful negotiations with the UCI, the world governing body, over plans for 10 four-day events, which would run alongside the three Grand Tours – of Italy, France and Spain – and six of the established one-day races.
The grands prix would include a time-trial, rolling stage, mountain stage and sprint stage, with all events taking place from Thursday to Sunday. Jonathan Price, chairman of London-based sports promoters the Gifted Group, told Press Association Sport: “We want to see races up and running in 2014.
'We've already had discussions with broadcasters, we're confident there's a real appetite for this product.
'We're now going to start some serious discussions with potential host locations to get our first race up and running.'
After three and a half years of planning, WSC, registered as a company in Luxembourg, is close to implementation.
The first meeting with teams was held before the Tour de France in Rotterdam in 2010, with eight contracted teams confirmed yesterday as Garmin-Sharp, Liquigas-Cannondale, Movistar, Omega Pharma-QuickStep, Rabobank Cycling Team, Radioshack-Nissan-Trek, Team Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank and Vaconsoleil-DCM.
Financial backing is being provided by
Czech billionaire businessman Zdenek Bakala, who owns Mark Cavendish's
Omega Pharma-QuickStep team.
Pure gold: Hoy won two medals in London
Bakala has led talks with the UCI since March, and, despite the world governing body being occupied by the ongoing fallout of the Lance Armstrong scandal, a conclusion to negotiations is close.
'We see this as something we wanted to do with them, because we believe it was something the marketplace wanted and was good for the sport,' Price added.
'Those discussions have been positive and I hope we're getting close now to a conclusion to them.
'Clearly they have a lot on their plate right now – that probably hasn't helped – but even against that backdrop the discussions have been positive.'
The structure can be compared to that of tennis, where the top male players feature in the ATP Masters 1000 events and the four grand slams, with the WTA Tour running alongside. In cycling, plans are similar, with a commitment for a parallel women's series.
The Giro d'Italia, Tour de France and Vuelta a Espana would be part of the project alongside one-day races Milan-San Remo, Tour of Flanders, Paris-Roubaix, Amstel Gold Cup, Liege-Bastogne-Liege and Tour of Lombardy, with a points system to award the leading rider and team at the end of the season.
Riders would race a maximum of 88 days per season, while there is a commitment for an anti-doping programme in a bid to eradicate the use of performance-enhancing drugs from the sport.
Tour de France organisers the Amuary Sports Organisation, who also run races such as the Tour of Qatar and Paris-Nice, have not yet been consulted. It could be a potential stumbling block.
Price added: 'In terms of our 10 grands prix, we don't need any other race organiser on board. We no more need ASO's approval to do that than Coca-Cola needs Pepsi's approval to launch a new product.'
Price is confident a restructuring of cycling's calendar will only improve the sport, with many races on the current calendar struggling.
'Judgement has been passed on a lot of the other races,' he said.
'A lot of those races are dying and they're not dying because we've come up with a concept of a format that's driven by what television, sponsors and fans want.
'They're dying because the marketplace has cast judgement on them.
'If you want to progress as a sport and if you want to develop, you need to respond to what the marketplace want and if you don't you die.'
Meanwhile, Britons Geraint Thomas, Luke Rowe and Ian Stannard are part of Team Sky's seven-man squad for the season-opening Tour Down Under. Two-time Olympic team pursuit champion Thomas will race with Rowe and Stannard in Adelaide in January.