ANNA Meares has revealed that she considered reaching out to Sir Chris Hoy as she agonised over whether to retire ahead of next April's Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, and a track cycling event which will take place in a velodrome which bears her name. The 33-year-old from the Queensland coal mining village of Blackwater - who has two Olympic titles, 11 world gold medals and six Commonwealth Games triumphs to her name - called time on her illustrious career after the Rio Olympics, a retirement which had echoes of Hoy's decision not to prolong his career to allow him to compete in the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome at Glasgow 2014.

"I was very close to contacting him and seeking some advice on his decision on that," Meares told Herald Sport. "Because for me when the Gold Coast games were announced, it was like that, a golden carrot dangling in front of you that you are just so desperate to make. To be quite honest I had the fairytale way to go out in front of me and I chose not to take it. I can't begin to express how difficult that was.

"I love competition, it is such a rare environment, particularly the Olympics and the Commonwealth Games," she added. "I could live there. But the day-to-day grind takes its toll and for an older athlete with an ageing body, it can be quite a difficult thing to drag through those final years. The main thing for me was my physical health and my lower back is not in the best condition. I could have got to the Gold Coast but I don't believe I would have been competitive."

As it is, Meares will have to settle for an ambassadorial role at Gold Coast 2018, one which began when she accepted the Queen's Baton at Buckingham Palace in the presence of both Her Majesty and her great rival Victoria Pendleton this week to run the first leg of a relay which will end up on the Eastern seaboard of Australia next April.

"For my velodrome to follow on from Sir Chris Hoy's in terms of the Commonwealth Games, that is very exciting for me," said Meares, who won one of her gold medals in Glasgow, where she was flag bearer for the Aussie team. "Young kids will walk into that velodrome and think 'who is Anna Meares?'. They will learn about what I did in the sport and my rivalry with Victoria Pendleton, they will learn about the Commonwealth and Olympic medals and hopefully they might become the next world class track cyclists of the future."

One track - and road - cyclist of the present as well as the future is Scotland's Katie Archibald. If the 23-year-old from Milngavie's results in Glasgow 2014 emphasised the range of her talents - she took bronze in the points race, and finished fifth in the road time trial and seventh in the road race - now an Olympic champion, she seems even more likely to write her name over this event in 2018, where she could contend for medals - perhaps against Laura Kenny - in any number of events.

"What I love about someone like Katie is that there are just no parameters with her," said Meares. "You can't box her in, in any capacity. Energy like that should never be boxed in. People like that are an entertaining entity and really valuable to the sport. You can never underestimate anyone who is hungry to succeed. And one thing I learned that, it is very different to be the hunter than being the hunted. Wouldn't that be very cool if we saw another rivalry develop there."