Q&A: Pete Cocker (Richardsons Trek)

Quiz time with Pete Cocker from the long running team of Andy Lyons, Richardsons Trek who works full time and favourite race is the Lincoln GP….

Q&A: Pete Cocker (Richardsons Trek)

– What does it mean to you to ride for a team as long standing as this one?
Pete: The main thing the stability of the team provides is a platform to try new things in races and learn without the fear that at the end of the season things might go South leaving you looking for another ride.

– Where are you based in the UK?
Pete: I’m based in Nottingham at the moment which is obviously outside of the usual Richardsons ‘catchment area’. This is a benefit to everyone because I can ride a different calendar without having selection issues.

– What is your favourite training area where you are based?
Pete: All weekend you’ll find me riding round the Vale of Belvoir and down towards Melton on a lot of the roads the Cicle classic is based on.

– What are your 2019 highlights?
Pete: Gaining my Elite Licence was pretty cool. Being based in the Midlands and working full time means my calendar is a bit thinner than most of the guys I’m competing with and has meant I’ve never really bothered with chasing points.

– What was the most fun/enjoyable race you did in 2019?
Pete: For me it has to be the new Bourne Cicle classic. Growing up in Grantham, it came within a mile of my parents house. I turned up not expecting much at all and had a couple of mechanicals along the way but manage to scrape 13th.

– What was the toughest race you did in 2019
Pete: It would have to be the Melton Cicle classic. Having ridden it five times now and never having finished, I was determined to make it this year. I made it to the finishing circuit in the second group on the road 2 minutes behind the leaders only to completely run out of steam and lose over 15 minutes in the last 20km. I did get a couple of bottles of wine for my troubles, picking up the Lanterne Rouge.

– Was there one thing you learned in 2019 that stands out?
Pete: This year I learnt that nothing can replace time in the saddle when it comes to training. I upped my volume and consistency on previous seasons and dropped the intensity slightly which paid off in the last hour of the prems.

– Your bike for 2019 was what? 
Pete: This year I rode a lovely team issue Trek Emonda supplied by Richardsons, cannot fault it at all!

– Favourite type of race, road race or crit?
Pete: Road Races for sure!

– Do you have a usual role in a race like being in breaks etc or freedom to just race …
Pete: The brilliant thing about the team is that we are free to race as we wish, making decisions on the road. More often than not, the Prems are a war of attrition so it’s often a waiting game.

– In National A road races and crits, are they quite physical between riders?
Pete: The Road Races are pretty chilled to be honest and likewise the crits are once you’ve got the first couple of laps out the way and the pecking order has been established. The problems arise when there’s a new unexpected face thrown in to the mix..

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– Any scary moments in 2019 in races?
Pete: Coming off the top of the Mountain in the Manx GP was certainly ‘an experience’

– Going back to a team car – how much effort does that require or is it quite easy jumping from car to car etc
Pete: It completely depends on the Parcour. Some courses, you can drift up and down with no effort however certain races you wouldn’t go back unless you had to as the bunch can be in one massive line.

– Has the serious training begun already this winter?
Pete: Yes, I’m back to training consistently most days now. For the past few years, I’ve never really taken a proper off season as I can’t get in the same volume as the full-time guys. Once the racing finished this year, I cracked completely and took almost two months to get back to it again.

– Are your winter training days structured or is it just riding to maintain fitness for now?
Pete: Working full-time, everything I do has to have some structure to it whether it’s a 60 mile round trip commute or squeezing in 30 minute on the Wattbike

– Do you do any type of racing in the winter?
Pete: Absolutely not, winter for me is all about getting to cafe and back.

– How do you manage the training around work?
Pete: I’ve been working full-time for several years around racing. It certainly makes things more difficult in terms of managing recovery and getting the volume in however working at Wattbike I’ve got access to some brilliant help which wouldn’t be there for most.
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– What is your favourite race in the UK and why?
Pete: It has to be the Lincoln GP. Having grown up locally watching it as a kid, all I ever wanted to do was ride that and I’ve already done that several times so now it’s all about chasing the win.

– Are there things you would like to see changed about the race calendar in the UK?
Pete:I’d love to see a more varied calendar with a couple more stage races or UCI opportunities so that we move out of our little bubble and show off how strong we are over here at the moment.

– Do you spend more time training indoors in the winter than the summer?
Pete: Yes I spend so much of my winter inside on the Wattbike that once the sun comes out I’ll take every opportunity that I can to get outside.

– Warm weather training camps or grin and bare the British winter …
Pete: I think we grin and bare an awful lot over here when it comes to the weather so I always try to squeeze two training camps in over the winter to break it up.

– When do you expect your 2020 season to begin?
Pete: I try not to start too early as it can be a long year otherwise. It will most likely be a grim Nat B in mid-march.

– Finally, what races in 2020 are ones you really want to work towards being part of?
Pete: I had the calendar I wanted in 2019 so it’s really just more of the same but moving on to winning rather than just taking part. A top 5 in a Nat A is the target and a win over in Belgium would be nice (just to say I’ve done it).

Thanks Pete and good luck in 2020! 


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