Joanna Rowsell Shand MBE is a cyclist on the Great Britain team and two times Olympic Champion from London 2012 and Rio 2016.
Joanna began competitive cycling relatively late – aged 16 – having been talent spotted at school aged 15. Joanna wasn’t a cyclist at all previously and having been talent spotted was faced with a steep learning curve into the world of cycling skills and tactics. Perseverance lead to junior National Titles and representing Great Britain at the junior World Championships in only her second year of racing.
Joanna grew up in London but after finishing her A Levels relocated to Manchester to be a full time cyclist and within 9 months won her first World Title in the women’s Team Pursuit. A series of setbacks throughout 2010 put Joanna’s place on Team GB in jeopardy as she subsequently suffered a bad year in 2011, but she battled back to become World Champion, World Record holder and Olympic Champion in 2012.
After the London Olympics Joanna focussed more on individual events and in 2014 completed the World Championships and Commonwealth Games double with gold medals at both events in the Individual Pursuit that year.
Joanna again made Team GB in 2016 for the Rio Olympics but this time the team went in as the underdogs having not won the World Title that year. However the team blew the competition away to take a gold medal again and 3 new World Records in the process.