Elinor Barker: Olympic cyclist reveals she earned silver medal while pregnant

British cyclist Elinor Barker has revealed she was pregnant when she earned a silver medal at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

British cyclist Elinor Barker has revealed she was pregnant when she earned a silver medal at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Britain’s Laura Kenny, Katie Archibald, Neah Evans and Josie Knight finished with an Olympic silver medal in the track cycling team pursuit in August.

They placed behind a dominant German team who set a new world record of 4mins 04.242secs to take gold.

Although Barker did not race in the final, she still received a silver medal after taking part in the heats.

The 27-year-old has now revealed she was pregnant during the Games, after announcing she was expecting her first child with her partner.

"Casper and I are excited to announce that we are expecting our first child," Barker posted on Instagram. "We can’t believe how lucky we are and are so excited to start the next part of our lives together."

In a later post, Barker wrote: "And for the eagle eyed among you who have done the maths… yep, I was pregnant at the Tokyo Olympics!"

She included a photo of herself and her teammates with their silver medals, revealing she had a positive pregnancy test in her pocket at the time.

Barker also credited fellow cyclists Laura Kenny, Lizzie Deignan and Sarah Storey as inspirations. All three athletes have children, and returned to succeed in sport after pregnancy.

"Because of these women (and many more) I didn’t doubt the future of my career for one second," she wrote. "I’d always been in awe of what they’ve each achieved since becoming parents, but only recently have I fully understood the full power of what each of them has done."

Elinor Barker competed in the heats of the track cycling team pursuit event at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Barker’s announcement is all the more significant due to her endometriosis diagnosis in 2018.

The condition, which can cause pain, heavy periods and fatigue, affects around one in 10 women of reproductive age and can also make it more difficult to conceive.

Having earned a team pursuit gold medal at Rio 2016, Barker is an Olympic, two-time world and six-time European champion in the discipline. She is also a two-time world champion in the points race and scratch race.

After competing while pregnant, Barker now finds herself in good company. Tennis legend Serena Williams famously won the Australian Open in 2017 while two months pregnant.

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