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Olympics 2024: Jack Carlin & Jason Kenny plot route to success

Carlin is quietly relishing competing at these Olympics.

Tokyo was his first Games and he came away with silver and bronze in the team sprint and individual sprint, respectively.

But, with no crowds, family, or friends there in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, it did not have the feel of the Olympics.

This time, it’s the full-fat version.

Carlin has even got the iconic rings tattooed on to his right bicep. Just don’t ask him how he got it.

It signals his drive to make these Olympics memorable.

“It was a massive factor in me wanting to continue after Tokyo, to actually experience the Olympic Games and having friends and family there,” he says.

“We obviously had Glasgow [world championships] last year and having all my family and friends there to support me was massive. It spurred me on.

“You want to do it for them as well because they’ve supported you your whole career.”

Carlin is an emotional guy. He feels every win and every loss.

But, at just 27, he is now one of the elder statesmen of the callow men’s sprint group.

That brings pressure as well as privilege in a programme where the only currency is medals.

Kenny and Chris Hoy have the set the bar almost impossibly high for the new generation, but outwardly at least, Carlin shows no signs of bearing that burden.

“I wouldn’t say I’m the most mature, but I’m certainly the oldest or one of the oldest,” he says with a smile.

“I don’t think I feel the pressure to try and emulate what those two have. I think I’d be very surprised if anyone ever does again.

“But it’s definitely an aim. That’s what we all aspire to be.”

With Lavreysen leading a strong field of sprint talent, Carlin’s chances of grasping an elusive major gold medal are tough.

However, you get the sense he is determined to enjoy it, whatever the outcome.

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