Quickfire Q&A – Billy Oliver


Time trialist Billy Oliver takes the VeloUK quick-fire question and answer challenge

RST Cycle Clothing & Trigon Bikes

Quickfire Q&A – Billy Oliver


1. After a lot of hard work in 2015, do you feel equipment wise you are in a better place for next season and if so, what have you learnt that stands out the most?
Billy: It’s all change in 2016, new bike, new team and a lot of new opportunities. I learnt a lot last year in what works set up wise but I lacked the time on the bike to make it work.

With the support I have in 2016, I’m very confident in getting the set up right and being able to progress and become a stronger all round rider. Probably the biggest thing I learnt was sometimes you can mess around with things too much and it’s better to go back to a position you know well and make tiny changes you can monitor and adapt to.

2. What were your highlights in 2015?
Billy: The highlight was probably the national 100 top ten finish. It was my first ever 100 and I finished it knowing I have a lot more to give at that distance. Highlights were pretty short this year but what I learnt from it will make me stronger next year and beyond.

3. What race was the most fun in 2015 and why?
Billy: For me the local club events were the most fun. Just turn up and ride and a great time to try different things like kit and pacing strategies etc. The local VC Bristol events on the U102 were great and I managed to knock 54 seconds off my course PB from last year so it was always good to keep going back to the course and gauge my rides. As always, the Dursley events on the U7b are always in the list for a fun ride with plenty of friendly faces.

4. How much of a difference did having a legend like Matt (Bottrill) as your coach? What changed with your training?
Billy: Matt was a huge part of 2015 and will be an even bigger part in 2016. Feeding off his enthusiasm and desire to win is very focusing. The training changed in so many ways, it’s crazy. We spent a lot of time on my many weaknesses and it was hard at the start to accept that a lot of the work wouldn’t show through ’till later but I put total faith in Matt and it’s paying off now for sure. I’m a stronger more complete rider now rather than a rider with very average legs over very select distances.

5. Tell us about your winter training bike
Billy: My winter bike is my everyday bike and I ride it most days of the year commuting and training. It’s just a standard road bike with the same saddle, cranks and chain rings as I race on. I have got a really cheap ribble tt frame I’ve built up and plan to spend a lot more time riding over the winter in the tt position. I didn’t have a tt bike until late last year which really made the season hard and I never really caught up from that. There is nothing special on the road training bike, powertap wheel, standard 105 group set but it gets the job done. I’m way too poor for winter training bling!

6. How have you spent December on the bike?
Billy: December on the bike has been at home though I would like to do a training camp one year. I’ve just moved house and been working around the clock trying to renovate it so I’ve missed some sessions in November and spent December getting back on track. I’m really keen to get the work in.

A few longer steady rides but still getting the hard work in as well and building. I’m looking at some new ways to build on the bike strength over the winter and I’m getting some help from Alan Murchinson at performance chef to get my race weight sorted for next year as it was all over the place last year (my fault) so lots of planning and making small improvements now that we can work on in the new year.

7. The cheeky Xmas – if you could have any cycling related xmas present – what would it have been!
Billy: I’m a bit of a Star Wars nerd and I’ve seen an R2-D2 cycle helmet that looks really cool but whether I would be brave enough to wear it out I’m not so sure!



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