Rider Chat: Hayley Simmonds

Selected for the Great Britain team for the road worlds, we spoke to Hayley Simmonds after she won the 10 championships for the fourth time

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Rider Chat: Hayley Simmonds

At the 10 championships on September 3rd, Hayley Simmonds confirmed yet again how she is one of the country’s top female riders in the time trial with a win in that CTT Championship yet again. A victory on a stage in Thüringen Rundfahrt showed also she is very adept in a road race as well and yesterday, a season goal was achieved when she was selected in the GB team for the road worlds road race.

At the 10 champs, we spoke to Hayley, who had battled through strong cross winds to win that championship for the fourth time. After the race Hayley explained “I kind of wish the race had been held the day before, because when I came here Saturday afternoon for my pre-race ride on the course it was a lot warmer and the wind was far less.”

“Given how windy it was today, I am pleased with the time for the ride.”

On a course described more like a sporting than a drag strip course, Hayley recorded a time of 20.57. In conditions like that however it isn’t so much the time but the winning margin over her rivals and for Hayley that too was significant being the biggest of all her four 10 titles.

Talking about the testing conditions, Hayley explained “It was a cross tail wind out and cross head wind back but to be honest, the major component of that was the cross wind. There were quite a few cars on the course, and because the lanes were quite wide, that made it a little worse because the cars were then thinking they had time to slip through and when you have a cross wind coming from the left on the way out, you’re being blown into the lane and the cars coming past you so there were a couple of times that were quite testing when I had to hold my nerve and keep my core strong and hold the bike in straight a line as possible.”

When I put it to Hayley that looking at the results week in week out, women’s time trialling seems to be very strong with some talented riders out there, she replied “there have been some really fast times this year.”

“There are now a couple of riders close to breaking the 50 minute mark, Kate Allan did a 50.14 in Wales the other week, Rachael Elliott has done a 50.10 and Alice Lethbridge did a 50.20 yesterday so the women’s scene is really coming on and more riders are doing 19’s (for the 10 mile) and its great to see.”

“It keeps me on my toes making sure I am working hard knowing I can’t just come here and beat everyone by big margins. I have to really keep it going!”

Looking at her bike, I thought Hayley was riding her usual weapon but she explained “it is still a Cervelo P5 but a different one to the one I was riding last year. This is smaller frame size, a 48 so my old faithful is my spare bike. The bike is decked out with my aero coach bits and bobs like the line arm rests and 58 tooth chain ring and Vittoria Chrono tubulars which they don’t make any more. I have one more new one and once these are gone, I’ll have to find new tubs to ride.”
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After the 10 champs, Hayley drove to London with her bikes to drop them off for her trade team WNT to take to France for the Tour Cycliste Féminin International de l’Ardèche, and then competed in the stage race there.

The goal then was to be selected for the GB team for the Worlds and that has been confirmed by the team yesterday. “If I go for the road race and not the time trial” (which is what happened) Hayley explained “I am still really happy to be going there to ride the road race in support of Lizzie”.

After the Worlds, there is still more to race for as Hayley has the Chrono des Nations time trial (Oct 15) before finishing her season at the national hill climb. In summing up the year, Hayley finished with “it’s been a good year for me, I’m happy with my road racing. I had first big UCI road race win and was third on GC so I’m really happy with the season”.

Good luck to Hayley at the road worlds racing for her country and there can be bigger inspiration than her doing that to other riders in the time trial world…




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