October 10 - Rebecca Romero, who in 2008 became the only British woman to win Summer Olympic medals in two different sports, has given up on chasing a third.
Romero, who earned a rowing silver at the 2004 Athens Games in the quadruple sculls before switching to track cycling and taking gold in the individual pursuit at the 2008 Beijing Games, officially announced today that she is relinquishing her hopes of adding to her Olympic tally at London 2012 and has left Great Britain's cycling team.
The 31-year-old from Carshalton made dramatic progress after taking up cycling in 2006, but she has had a rough ride since her Beijing win.
Changes made to Olympic cycling in 2009 that saw her event removed from the programme for 2012 meant she had to try to make the team pursuit line-up.
Injury forced her to miss the World Cup event in Manchester in February, and she was again absent when Wendy Houvenaghel, Laura Trott and Dani King won the team pursuit gold at the World Championships in March.
"Having suffered several setbacks at crucial points, I believe I'm no longer on a pathway which will see me fulfil my Olympic ambition to win a second Olympic gold medal," said Romero, who was awarded an MBE in 2009.
"I'm proud to have contributed to the cycling team's great Olympic triumph in Beijing and I thank all the amazing people within British Cycling who were central to my success.
"I wish my current teammates every success in London next year."
British Cycling performance manager Shane Sutton said: "Rebecca's decision to leave is a great loss to the team and it's a shame to lose an Olympic champion going into the Olympic year.
"Looking ahead, we have some great young talent in addition to experienced riders in the team pursuit squad and I'm confident we can remain on track to hit our performance targets in the lead up to and during the London Olympic Games."
Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]
March 2011: Romero mentors British Olympic hopefuls
January 2010: Romero sets target for London 2012 after sticking with cycling
December 2010: World's cyclists angry over London 2012 changes
December 2010: IOC rubber-stamp controversial cycling changes for London 2012
November 2009: Romero to ride in London to Paris event