Talkingshop: Lucy Garner Interview


VeloUK speaks to the twice World Junior Women’s Road Race Champion Lucy Garner ahead of a big year as she steps up a level to the senior ranks

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In a story that reminds me of the Nicole Cooke years when she won was a multiple Junior World Champion and then stepped up to the senior ranks and made her presence felt all the way to being World and Olympic champion as well as classics winner, Lucy Garner is about to make that step up to the senior ranks in 2013.


Emotional! Lucy Garner wins her second world title as a junior. Photo: PhotoSport International UK USA Asia

I’ve watched for a few years now as Lucy has emerged from a talented group of young ladies to not only win senior races here in Britain but also go on to win two Junior World road titles (as well as European ones). And whilst her friends and teammates from years gone by, settle into normal jobs, Lucy finds herself in a major women’s team for 2013 and competing with her idols from years gone by.

Talking to Lucy at the last Revolution open in Manchester, the East Midlands rider says she still can’t believe she has now twice won the Junior Women’s World Road Race title to be the most successful Junior female rider since Nicole Cooke.

“It’s been pretty much all go ever since then” Lucy explained “and no, I couldn’t believe it when I crossed the line first. It was so emotional. It was just a great week for the whole team (Elinor Barker also won a title in the time trial).”


Lucy’s last racing event, Revolution 38, track racing which she says is good for her sprint on the road.

Lucy followed the Junior Worlds up with the British Track Championships and then took three weeks off the bike to chill and rest up ahead of what she knows is going to be a hard season ahead. “I’m a beginner again now and this is going to be so new and completely different to what I have been doing. I am getting back into the training now and its going pretty well.”

Lucy is joining the Argos Shimano team in 2013 and has three training camps to do before racing and has been busy preparing for the first of those training camps in Spain. Like a lot of British pros, male or female, Lucy has been busy getting in some hours on the bike to be in shape for the training camp and now having left school, she has more time to do the four hour rides.

There’s a lot of work to do for next year and when asked how it feels to be leaving behind the domestic racing scene to ride in Europe, Lucy explained “it’s a strange feeling as I look up to a lot of the women that race there and they are my idols. It is going to be strange to be put in a race with them and trying to compete with them.”


Lucy signing autographs whilst racing the Women’s Tour Series in 2012.

“It will be a massive learning curve for me. The team I have signed for is so keen on developing me as a rider and that is exactly what I need. So I am really looking forward to racing with them next year and it looks like a really good programme.”

Lucy’s race programme will be quite different to what she is used to and that means learning different skills. “The racing will be so different to what I am used to with one race on the weekend. I’ll be doing stage races constantly so for me the key will be getting the recovery and making sure I rest and sleep well.”

Lucy is keen to also shake off the tag of being a road sprinter and become more versatile telling us that she’d like to be more of an all-rounder and that includes improving her time trialling ability which she says modestly isn’t great. “I think I am ready for that challenge of racing as a senior now and I’m training hard for it. I am planning on moving out there in February but it will be a bit of both of being there and here.”

“My training hasn’t changed massively because you don’t want to do that as it could affect performance so I am just changing gradually. I am being coached by a coach in the Argos team and Paul Manning (GB coach). So I have a great team around me.”

Lucy admits she isn’t under pressure for results in 2013 and will simply be going out there to get the best results she can in races that will be a lot longer, and faster, than she is used to. So like many neo pros Lucy will probably be having a dual role of leading the team in races that may suit her as well as helping her teammates in other races, something she is keen to do.

Her racing is expected to start in South Africa and one race she’d like to do is the Women’s Tour of Flanders. Which all means the time is right to be preparing for the season and Lucy is currently in Spain at the first of three training camps. Escaping the British weather she says will be nice to do especially as it’s pretty grim right now.

“When I’m out there, I’ll be looking to do four to five hours a day to cram the miles in to get as fit as possible. Previously, I have been away with Harriett Owen and Corrine Hall and we did a lot of miles out there and it’s so easy to do when the weather is nice. You just go out, find new roads and it’s nice to have the company.”

One thing Lucy will have to get used to though is fending for herself. “I have only just left school and my mum is still cooking my meals so it will be a tough! I will miss the family as they won’t be able to come to my races as I’ll be all over the world and I won’t be able to follow Grace round to her races. But I have to take that step and I’m ready for it.”

Good luck to Lucy in 2013 with Argos Shimano


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