Blog: GB Academy’s Pete Mitchell


Last Saturday I returned from Cottbus, Germany where I had spent 10 days both training and racing with Team GB. I went there with the aim of getting some race practise ahead of the Under 23 Europeans as well as getting some massive days of training in. Germany is the ideal place to test both my head and my legs because the Germans have massive strength in depth and with the Russians, Polish, Czechs and Dutch making an appearance, the racing was of top quality.

The first weekend started off with a sprint competition where 55 senior male riders signed on and I qualified 8th in a time of 10.38secs. Given the conditions, I was pleased with the time and progressed smoothly to the 3rd round where I was beaten by the number 1 qualifier, Rene Enders. I made it back through the rep but then lost my quarter final to Robert Forsterman before finishing 8th overall. I was pretty pleased with how I rode tactically and adapted to the changes of racing on a big outdoor 333m track over 2 laps.

Day 2 consisted of a Kierin competition. Again the heavy surface and windy conditions made tactics very different to what I am used to in Manchester, but through a combination of hitting out hard and early from the front, and following some fast wheels, I made my way through to the final. The long day had however taken its toll and I was slow to react to and early move which lead to me getting stuck in 8th place behind a long string of riders and that was where I finished.

I was happy with my results and with seven sprints and four keirins in my legs, I enjoyed the warmer weather and smooth roads to most of my easy week!

The last day of racing was the prestigious Cottbus GP and ran with a similar format to the previous sprint day. Sixty seven riders competed and I qualified in 12th position with a time of 10.50secs. Blustery conditions and sunny spells caused varying conditions for different riders qualifying, and after my first few rounds, I was confident that my legs were better than my 12th seeding. I again made it to the quarter finals where I managed to hold off former world champion Maximilliam Levy by a tyres width, who qualified three tenths faster than me! I finished fourth overall after a few close rides but was very very happy with my result, given that the full GB team was present.

With these performances, I am in a very strong position for selection for Under 23 Europeans and should everything continue in the same way, I look forward to competing in Portugal in four weeks time! I shall update before and as always keep updated with twitter (PeteMitchellGB)