Tour of Britain Interview – Mark McNally


In his sixth Tour of Britain starting in his home city is An Post rider Mark McNally – we have a quick chat with him

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Tour of Britain Interview – Mark McNally

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Mark (left) was third in the CiCLE Classic this year.

Mark is part of Sean Kelly’s AN Post team based in Belgium and with only six riders to ride the Tour, Mark admits he is relieved that he was among the selection. “I think it’s one of the strongest teams we’ve fielded and if you look at the guys that missed out, I think Kurt and Niko had a very hard job”.

Asked has it been a goal since learning the race was starting in Liverpool, Mark replied “Yeah massively – it’ll be nice to be home.”

For the first time in the Tour’s eleven year history, the race will have a team presentation the night before the race. Will it be surreal to be ‘parading’ before family & friends I asked? “It will” he replied “All my family will be there and all the familiar faces from the local clubs too. It’s massively important to me after all the support they’ve all given me over the years.”

For a Liverpool rider, he admits that he doesn’t know a lot of the roads for the opening stage. “I doubt I’ve ridden much around the roads of stage one but we get a few laps to become familiar with them. Stage two, I know a few of the roads from the old Liverpool Century speed runs and everyone knows the Runcorn Bridge; it’ll just be a bit different not being on the bike path!”

“Stage two will definitely be tough once we get over into North Wales as there isn’t much flat around there and it’s all tough heavy rolling roads”.

Going back over his six Tours and asked about a highlight, Mark replies “I was 5th on the stage that finished after the cobbled Constitution Hill (Swansea) in 2010”.


Watching the skirmishes at the start of the race when it reaches zero kilometre, An Post are generally always in the mix trying to get up the road. Is that team strategy I asked Mark? “I just think we have a good bunch of riders and our quality shows when we get the opportunities”.

Looking back the season leading up to the Tour of Britain, Mark explains “I lacked a bit of spark at the beginning of the year then I was 3rd in the CiCLE Classic. After the nationals, I started working with Jon Sharples of TrainSharp and the last few races I have started going and feeling like my old self”.

The highlight so far in 2014? “Third in CiCLE Classic a week after having my wisdom teeth out!”

Mark spends most of his season racing in Europe and when asked what the difference between those races and the Tour on home roads, he replies “English roads are a bit heavier than Belgian ones but everywhere you race is different. Plus Kurt and Niko will tell you I always forget which side service is on anyway!”


Getting onto the important stuff, asked what his favourite mid race snack, Mark says “Kinetika Caramel Energy Bar”. And is breakfast whatever is on the table or something specific? “Like most cyclist nowadays it’s a Bowl of porridge, an omelette and a plate of rice a few hours before the race.

Taking him back to his days when he started out in Liverpool, he says his first race was the Southport Victoria Park Crits organised by Southport CC. “I crashed in my first one too” he adds.

And asked what the favourite race in Liverpool was came the reply “the Bickerstaffe chain gang. Not an official race but some serious racings gone down on it over the years” Mark explains.

Finally, if he could choose a result from the race to celebrate, what would that be — GC, Jersey or a stage, Mark says “AN Post has won two stages in the race over the years and I’d like to make it a 3rd!”

Good luck to Macca in the race and lets see some banners in Liverpool people for the local lad!
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