Talkingshop: Junior Worlds for Jon Dibben

Hargroves Cycles rider Jon Dibben is in New Zealand for the Junior World Track Championships in Invercargill

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Jon is one of five riders from Britain to travel there but the only Men’s Endurance rider. The others in the team are sprinter Matt Rotherham plus girls Elinor Barker, Amy Roberts and Hayley Jones. For Jon, it’s not his first Worlds as he’s been to the Road Worlds last year but New Zealand will be his first time to the Track Worlds and also his first trip to the other side of the world.

“I never expected to go to the track worlds” says Jon “so it’s a bonus”.

Equally at home on the road or track, Jon is a rider many expect to make it into the pro ranks as a senior.

It is not uncommon for the GB junior team not to travel to the Junior Worlds when they are as far away as New Zealand, and especially so in Olympic year when budgets and resources in the team are stretched. But, as part of the development process, the team have obviously felt that it was worth sending a small but talented team.

Dibben has achieved great results on the road and the track and explained it was only a few months ago they found out they were going to the Worlds. “It’s kind of come up quite late in the year when we found out we were going. I came back from the Track Euros (Portugal) knowing I was going to the Worlds so I have been track focused for a while really.”

At the European Track Championships, Jon came away with medals in the Olympic events, the Omnium (Bronze) and also the Team Pursuit (Silver) plus a Bronze in the Individual Pursuit. In the latter, it was a case of what might have been with a time in the Omnium Individual Pursuit that was so much quicker than his time in the open event and the eventual winner of the open Individual Pursuit.

In New Zealand, Jon will be racing in the Omnium and Pursuit events and says that they have been doing a lot of track work during the year and that he feels well prepared. Jon added he wasn’t happy with the Individual Pursuit time at the Euros where he won Bronze and that whilst he doesn’t expect to break any world records in New Zealand, he is looking to ride times better than he has done.

Jon (Left), with Owain Doull, brother Peter and Ali Slater after winning the British Team Pursuit title last year.

His first goal though will be the Omnium which comes first in his schedule of two events, kicking off on Thursday, August 23rd. “I handled the Omnium quite well at the Europeans and recovered well between races. It was a good experience for the Worlds because the Youth Omniums were the only ones I’d ridden.”

Prior to the Europeans, Jon had some good Omnium tips from former Hargroves Cycles teammate Owain Doull and has also benefited from being able to watch the Olympic event as well. “The Omnium comes two days before the Individual Pursuit so that will be my first race and all my focus will be on that. Watching the Olympics, you realise you can’t afford a bad result. It’s not always about winning the races but getting a solid result in those bunch races.”

Jon, like Ed Clancy and Laura Trott who did such a great job in the Omnium events in the Olympics winning Bronze and Gold medals respectively, says that he had a similar experience to the one Ed Clancy had at the Olympics but for Jon, at the Europeans.

“I did well with the timed events (two wins) but my Points race let me down so you can’t afford to miss the moves in those races and need to ride from the front.”

At the Euros, Jon won two of the events, the Pursuit with a 3.18 and the Kilo with a 1.03. They are very quick times especially for a Junior but Jon realises he needs to improve on the bunch races where at the Europeans he was 9th in the Points and 7th in the Elimination. He did finish 3rd in the Scratch race and as an excellent roadman, better results in the ‘brutal’ Points and Elimination events are well within him.

To prepare for the Junior Worlds, he’s been doing a couple of days of track work a week for the last five weeks, some in Manchester with Olympic Development Coach Matt Winston and others in Newport (Wales) with former ODP coach, Darren Tudor. That’s given him plenty of track time and with five or so days to get over the jet leg after the flight from Britain, Jon, and the other British riders should be in fine form to add to the Olympic success.

Good luck to them all in New Zealand.



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