Interview – Hannah Barnes Back Home


After years of dominating local racing, Hannah Barnes is back from America with her pro team to tackle the Friends Life Women’s Tour on home roads

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Interview – Hannah Barnes Back Home 

There I was walking through the hotel where stars abound and who should I see but Hannah Barnes. The rider I saw many times on the ‘circuit’ in Britain in 2013, has been away since January racing for her US team, United Healthcare but is back for her home ‘Tour’.

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“I moved out on the 7th of January and last Saturday I came home for the first time” Hannah explained still in her training kit after a ride to her parents. Asked if that time in the US has gone really quickly, Hannah replied, “it has”. “I have had so much fun and I have had the best time ever.”

“I love all my teammates and to come here with them in the team bus, is pretty cool.”

Hannah’s first race with the team saw her win that race in Argentina. “I managed to pull that first win off which was quite nice because it was the first British win as well which Lizzie pointed out to me which was cool. Then I crashed out so there were mixed emotions that week.”

“We then did the team launch and a race in El Salvador which was an experience!”

Hannah has gone on to win other races in the US but talking to her the one thing she is hoping to do more of is driving to races and seeing the country. “I have been flying a lot” she says. “I have been on 25 flights this year so far which is pretty crazy, delayed flights and cancelled flights. Now I go to airports and it’s no big deal but before I used to get quite nervous. Now its second nature and I spend my time packing and unpacking.”

“I love it but the country is huge! The mechanics drive from one end to another and I’ve asked if I can join them but I’m not allowed. I have booked one drive with them after my last race in August though. You don’t see anything flying. You go to the airport to the hotel to the race. You don’t really get to enjoy the place and I’d like to do a road trip across America … which is what everyone would want to do.”


Friends Life Women’s Tour
I flew in on the 26th (last Saturday) and Sharon is arriving at 2pm today because she really wanted to do this race (Sharon has just finished another race in the US which the team won). “I live with her in the US and this is the longest we’ve been apart. Sharon told me that United Healthcare is such a good team to start my pro career with because everyone is so nice and friendly and it is well organised. They really care about the women.”

“It’s not a men’s team and women’s team, it’s one team which is cool.” Asked what she is looking forward to most at the Women’s Tour, Hannah replied “to race on my home roads. I did a recon the other day and didn’t need a map as I knew exactly where it went.”

“From Desborough on stage 1, I know the whole route (over half the stage). To finish in Northampton is special too as a lot of people are coming to watch. I am though looking forward to all the stages.”

Asked if she feels some pressure to perform in the race, Hannah replied “I do. I am normally quite good with pressure but the press has been hectic but I know not everyone in Northamptonshire is expecting big things!”

“The team believe in me but this is like no other race I have done. The riders that are here means it will be hard work. Everyone is up for it and I am just enjoying being home in Britain and showing the team around and having people take the mick out of their accent and not mine because I have had a lot of that!”

“Its going to be good fun and great for my family to watch because I think they found it hard not being able to do that when I’m away.”

Good luck to Hannah and look out for her and the team in the colours of white and blue ….



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