COLNE’S Beijing cycling medallist Steven Burke has revealed his ambition to compete in the Tour de France.

It was recently announced that Sky are to sponsor a British team at cycling’s most prestigious road event, and Burke was one of the names linked with a future appearance in the team, along with the likes of Geraint Thomas, Ed Clancy and Chorley-based Bradley Wiggins.

The 21-year-old has made his name on the track, securing bronze in the individual pursuit at last year’s Olympic Games, and is keen to concentrate on that aspect of the sport ahead of next year’s Commonwealth Games in Delhi and the London Olympics in 2012.

But he remains interested in competing in elite road racing in the future and, even if the likely launch of the British Tour de France team in 2010 may come too soon, he has expressed a desire to be involved in the future.

“It’s possible,” said Burke, who was only just recovering from food poisoning as he missed out on the medals in the team pursuit at the Track Cycling World Championships in Poland last week.

“It’s something I’d like to do. I think it is going to be the Sky team and they are saying it could be one of the best road teams.

“It’s the biggest event in cycling. Winning a stage at the Tour de France is greater than gold at the World Championships. You have to be a phenomenal rider just to compete in it.

“But that might be a few years away yet. At the moment the focus is on London 2012 and on the Commonwealth Games next year. That’s what I’m building up to.

“I’m still developing yet. I’m only young.”