BOLTON’S big medal hopeful Jason Kenny is preparing for the hardest challenge of his cycling career as the 2012 Olympic Games kicks off today.

The former Mount St Joseph pupil found out he had been chosen over Olympic champion and triple gold medallist Sir Chris Hoy to represent Team GB in the individual sprint eight days ago.

But for Jason’s parents, Mike and Lorraine Kenny, of Farnworth, London 2012 marks the biggest test of their son’s cycling history — despite him winning team gold and individual silver medals in the Beijing Games in 2008.

Dad Mike, aged 50, said: “The hard bit for Jason was getting picked but it’s some achievement getting picked over an athlete like Chris Hoy.

“I think he’s feeling pretty relaxed but it’s just a question of delivering on the day.

“He’s always been very laid-back but I think this will be hardest competition he has done so far.

“When he competed in Beijing, he got the call and went.

“It all happened so quickly and he was so young he took it all in his stride.

“I think Lorraine and I get more nervous than he does but the Olympic Velodrome is going to be absolutely ringing with the atmosphere.

“It was really loud at the World Championships but London is going to be something else. It’s going to be amazing for the team.”

Jason, aged 24, is training with the rest of the GB cycling team at the Wales National Velodrome in Newport.

Mr Kenny added: “They’re all training hard as late as possible at the velodrome.

“I think they’re staying there so they have more access to the track plus it’s a more relaxed atmosphere away from London.”

Kenny won the individual spot after he finished in second place ahead of Hoy, aged 36, at this year’s World Championships in Melbourne.

The Olympic track cycling events start on Thursday August 2.