Katie Archibald opens up on struggles after her partner died last year

Olympic cycling gold medallist Katie Archibald admits ‘everything is still s***’ as she opens up on her struggles after her partner Rab Wardell died last year as she battled to save his life

  • Rab Wardell, 37, died after suffering a cardiac arrest while in bed last August
  • Katie Archibald wants to honour him at the World Championships in Glasgow 
  • The Olympic gold medallist admits the build-up to the event has been ‘awful’ 

Olympic champion Katie Archibald has admitted ‘everything is still s***’ ahead of the UCI Cycling World Championships in Glasgow, following the death of her partner Rab Wardell last year.

Wardell tragically died at the age of 37 last August after he suffered a cardiac arrest while lying in bed at their home in Glasgow.

Archibald had attempted to resuscitate Wardell, who had won the Scottish Cross Country Championship just two days earlier.

Paramedics arrived within minutes but were unable to revive Wardell.

In an interview with the Telegraph, Archibald said she constantly replays the events around Wardell’s death in her head.

Katie Archibald admits she still replays the events around her partner Rab Wardell’s death repeatedly, after he tragically died following a cardiac arrest last August (pictured together)

Archibald wants to honour Wardell during the UCI Cycling World Championships in Glasgow

The two-time Olympic champion admitted ‘everything is still s***’ ahead of the home event

‘I think he’s got something in his throat and I offer him a glass of water, and eventually he stops gasping and that’s when I call 999,’ Archibald said. 

‘The ambulance got there in nine minutes. I’ve learnt that apparently the target time is seven, which amazes me. And the UK mean is nine, which just blows my mind.

‘They tried for an hour. In that hour I started imagining “What is our life going to be like now?” But at no point did I think that it would be over.

‘That whole, like, sequence is constant.’

The two-time Olympic gold medallist and four-time world champion revealed she had considered quitting the sport amid a series of injuries.

This included sustaining a back fracture, a concussion, a broken collarbone and two sprained ankles in crashes.

Archibald said that Wardell had played a key role in encouraging her to continuing her career last year, prior to his death.

The 29-year-old, who won gold for Team GB at both the Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 Olympics, admits she is not expecting to perform at her best at the upcoming World Championships in Glasgow.

Wardle, who represented Scotland at the Commonwealth Games, had been an official advisor to Glasgow’s bid to hold the multi-discipline Cycling World Championships

Archibald said that ‘everything is still s***’ in the build-up to the home event, which begins on Saturday. 

‘The last few weeks have been awful. I can’t explain it,’ Archibald said.

‘It’s like when the fatigue gets to a point that you’re, I suppose everybody’s experienced this, where if stage one is like your legs are a bit sore, stage two is you can feel it’s hard to get out of bed, and stage three you sort of lose your language skills a bit.

‘Stage four is that you’re just constantly crying.’

Archibald revealed she wants to honour Wardell at the World Championships, which are the first to include track, road, BMX, and mountain bike competitions in a single edition of the event.

Archibald (left) hopes the World Championships will be a chance for people to talk about Wardell among the legends of the sport

Wardell, who lived in Glasgow and represented Scotland in the Commonwealth Games, had served as an official advisor for the bid.

‘It’s not just a World Championships to me,’ Archibald said. ‘It feels so much bigger. Bigger than any Olympic Games. Bigger than anything I’ve ever done. 

‘Rab loved this sport. He loved the legends of this sport. 

‘These world championships, and the conversations happening around it, I feel, are a chance for people to talk about him as one of those legends.’  

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