Amitstead withdraws from road race

Olympic silver medallist Lizzie Armitstead has withdrawn from the Great Britain team for the UCI Road World Championships due to illness.

The 23-year-old from Otley won Britain's first medal of the London 2012 Olympics and was poised to lead the team in the 129-kilometre road race in Limburg, Holland.

A statement from British Cycling read: "Lizzie Armitstead has withdrawn from the UCI Road World Championships on Saturday due to illness. The team have decided not to call in a reserve rider at this stage."

Britain had qualified the maximum six riders for the road race, but Armitstead's absence means a five-strong team will take to the start line.

Emma Pooley, who finished fourth in the time-trial yesterday, could lead the squad on an undulating course, while 2008 Olympic champion Nicole Cooke is likely to be given a free role.

Pooley and Cooke are joined by Sharon Laws, who missed out on selection for the Olympic team despite winning the British title, Katie Colclough and Nikki Harris.