Talkingshop: Laura Trott the Talk of the Town


Gordon Wiseman talks to Olympic Champion Laura Trott after she wins the London Nocturne on Saturday evening

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With the increasingly popular IG London Nocturne again cramming the streets around the capital’s iconic Smithfield Market on Saturday evening, huge crowds again witnessed racing action right out of the top draw with many of the country’s top professional riders – both home and European based – being the main attraction.


Photo: Antony Edmonds.

Laura Trott’s victory by just inches from the on-form Hannah Barnes put a huge smile on the face of the Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling rider and in doing so, denied double 2013 Johnson’s Health Tech Grand Prix winner Barnes (MG – Maxifuel Pro Cycling) from taking her fifth win in the women’s Nocturne race.

Many thought that perhaps the home based competition would be swamped by the horde of Wiggle Honda riders who lined up for the women’s race but into the final laps, the lead group of nine riders was very evenly split.

Turning into the final corners, many in the crowd – including the every hopeful and expectant MG – Maxifuel crew back in the pits – thought that Barnes had actually won the race but the photo finish camera proved that Britain’s 2012 Olympics golden girl Trott had won by the narrowest of margins.

After the race VeloUk caught up with the ever smiling Laura Trott:

VeloUK – You won but that was so very close.
Laura Trott – Thank god. I won that by just inches, I had to properly lunge for the line and everything. We’d caught lapped riders so everyone was all over the place. I was thinking ‘oh no’ as Hannah celebrated. I’m so please about that because I really wanted to win after the whole team had done so much for me during the race. I just didn’t want to let them down.

Velo – Were you the team’s protected rider for the race?
LT – It was a choice between me and Dani (King who came third on the night and shared with Laura and Jo Rowsell in winning the Women’s Olympic Team Pursuit Gold medal). The crowd were chanting my name through the whole race so I just had to give the race win back to them for their support. Winning tonight gave me such a buzz. It reminded me of winning at the Olympics, hearing them chanting “Trotty” so it took me right back to last summer. It’s been amazing.

Velo – Where does this win sit compared with other road successes you’ve had?
LT – This is my first proper British road win. And it gets me National points so I’m now back in the rankings!

Velo – How has your year gone with the transition from the track to the road?
LT – It’s such a different thing. To start with it felt a bit iffy. The first race I did I had to go flat out for the first 3km so it was like being back on the track. That was at the GP Dottignies in Belgium where I got fourth which was quite good. I didn’t feel really good there but since then I’ve just ridden myself in.

Velo – You’ve just taken part in the first Track World Cup qualification event in Valencia. How did that go?
LT – That went really well, much better than I thought it would go. It’s a lot harder going from road to track than the other way round so I thought I was going to feel crap but to be honest I actually felt the best I’ve ever felt in the Pursuit in the Omnium. I rode it really controlled so I never had to go flat out because I knew what was happening. I’ve never actually stuck to a schedule before and, without making it sound stupid it almost felt easy, it’s weird. But I think that’s because of the road work I’m doing.

Velo – With all your track success it sounds strange to hear you say you’ve never stuck to a schedule before.
LT – To be fair, at Junior level you’re only doing 2km so you’re supposed to go flat out. And that’s what I’ve done since moving up to the Seniors, just go flat out for the 3kms. It wasn’t until the World’s last year that I stopped riding like that because it was getting to the point that I wasn’t getting any better. Chris Newton is my coach now and we’re just learning as we try to develop me as a rider, not just to be getting stronger.

Velo – Has tonight’s race been a target for you?
LT – This particular race hasn’t been a specific target but obviously we wanted to win it so it’s been a target for the whole team and not just me. Now I’m looking at the National Road Race in two weeks time. I really want to get stuck into that and we’ll have, I think, five riders in that. I kind of want to get a medal there but you just never know how that’ll go and I’m not very good at climbing the hills so I’ll just be hoping for the best.

Then I’m back on the track for the U23 Euros and that’s my next big target really.

Velo – And what about the rest of the year after that? The road squad for the World’s?
LT – Maybe. Perhaps not this time round but I want to ride the road at the Commonwealth Games. This year the World’s in Italy is really hilly so it wouldn’t suit me so I don’t really think I’d be that much of a help to the others.

Velo – Do you see this as a development year for you as you’re moving more onto the road from the track?
LT – No, it’s more of the fact that there’s three years before the next Olympic Games so I’ve got time to learn. I’m never going to get better in the Omnium unless I get first stronger and secondly technically better. That’s my focus now because I can, I’ve got the time to do that. The road will give me that, both the tactics and the strength. Without the strength I won’t have the confidence to try new things. So I need the strength to be confident, one piggybacks off the other.

Velo – So a good result tonight all round?
LT – Really good. I’m really happy.


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