Is the first time you have had support from the Dave Rayner Fund?
This is my third year supported by the Dave Rayner Fund.
What is your cycling history?
I got into racing at Scunthorpe Track league on a Friday night as an under twelve. I remember watching the races for a couple of weeks and being utterly terrified of having a go but my dad talked me into it, I didn't do particularly well in the races but I enjoyed it MASSIVELY. I went on to a bit of cyclo-cross racing and then eventually road racing as an under fourteen.
What team are you joining?
For 2019 I will be staying with Eiser Hirumet for my third season. I feel very at home with this team and get along well with the staff and riders. The team knows me and my strengths and weaknesses, and I know how the team runs and how things work which makes life easier throughout the season.
Tell us a bit about your team.
Eiser Hirumet is a relatively young team at just four season old but every year is growing and building a stronger roster of riders. Based out of Durango in the Basque Country, the team travels Spain doing the Copa De Espana series, gets further afield in France for a couple of stage races, as well as a week in Belgium. The mainstay of the team is the Basque Lehendakri and Euskaldun series which, although based purely in the Basque Country attracts riders from all over Spain and even internationals. These races have big teams like Caja Rural and Lizarte competing every week so are big prestigious races even though they are almost weekly. Durango and the Basque Country has a rich history and heritage in cycling, it’s a real pleasure to be living and immersed in cycling culture. The team is very international with four British riders, two Columbians, a Frenchman, and a Panamanian.
What is your race programme looking like?
The lehendakari and Euskaldun series starts at the end of February and runs right through to the middle of September. The Copa De Espana series starts at the end of February as well and runs until May. There are numerous stage races throughout the season to, but most are later in the year. There are way too many races to mention, I can race almost every week and often more than once. If I did the entire calendar I would have over 70 days of racing. I have a few target races, the Copa De Espanas are the biggest one-day races so those are targets, as well as the Vuelta Bidasoa and the 2 French stage races, Tour du Beaujolais and Tour du Piemont Pyreneen.
Where are you going to live?
I am living on the outskirts of Durango in a small flat which the team helped me get. I am just 5 minutes from the centre of the town and all the necessities, and only 5 minutes from the team flat. There are lots of riders in the area to train with and loads of roads and climbs to explore so the days never get boring. Its only half and hour on the bus to multiple beaches when the weather gets warmer, and only 25 minutes to the centre of Bilbao.
What bike will you be riding and who supplies the team kit?
The team will be on the Ridley Fenix SL for 2019, the superb do-it-all bike favoured by Lotto Soudal the past few seasons. Ultegra Di2 groupset, Rotor cranks, and Ridleys in house brand Forza for the finishing kit. The clothing is from the Belgium brand, Bioracer.
Do you have any other interests outside of cycling?
I am quite interested in cars and motorbikes, particularly modified cars and often visit car shows with friends when I am at home in the UK. Being a cyclist and the lifestyle that comes with it don't really support this interest though!