Best of Memories: Steve Joughin (Pro Vision Clothing)

The pocket rocket from the Isle of Man, Steve Joughin, recalls the trip he had to do to get to races in Britain from the Rock …

RST Cycle Clothing & Trigon Bikes

Best of Memories: Steve Joughin (Pro Vision Clothing)

Junior road race champion, winner of the Premier Calendar overall in 1980/1982, Milk race stage winner (multiple times) and double Professional British RR Champion, Steve is a well known figure in the sport of cycling. Here is his best of memories from a great career in the sport.

Steve writes – The hardest part of being a bike rider and coming from the Isle of Man is crossing the Irish sea for four hours on the Isle of Man steam packet washing machine and while the ferries have improved greatly nowadays, the Irish sea has not!

I had a job with a fruit and veg company back in the early 80s as money was very tight and one of my jobs was to drive the Van to the kipper yard in Peel with my bike and bag in the back of the Transit van. I would then build the Kipper boxes around my bike and bag so it could not be seen, then drive it on to the boat and put the keys in a locker.

I would then supposedly disembark and go back home as I always volunteered to do this pickup on a Friday. But, instead, I would go into the men’s toilet and sit in there till the boat was 1 hour out on the four hour crossing.

At the time I was leading the Season long Star trophy and representing Great Britain all over the World and I would not get any expenses until I reached the mainland. The BCF as it was then, they would lend you a jersey and a skin suit that you had to hand back for races like the two week long Milk Race where we may have been treated to two jerseys!

Anyway, I one day got paged on the ship tannoy to attend the Captains office as they knew what I was up too. He knew me and put me in a cabin and arranged a meeting with the top man and I never had to pay for a boat ticket for three years and that was a massive help.

That’s what makes me laugh now when someone says I aint traveling 150 miles to race LOL! Throw a force 8 gale on a four to five hour boat trip into the mix and try and win a Prem as they call them now. But they were great times.

The best experience of racing a bike was the Tour of New Caledonia in the South Pacific. I was out there for a month, not tarmac roads just dirt roads and it was 10 days long but the racing was tough. You could only use Wolber Cyclo Cross tyres some days and you may have 10 or so punctures. There were loads of crashes and the GC was up and down like a toilet seat. You could lose 15 minutes one day and get it all back the next. There were two riders from each country and every rider had their own pickup team car. We then had a crit in Vanuatu. It was pure paradise.

Nowadays I have found the love for the bike again after hating it for years after I stopped racing and I’m getting stuck into the Pro Vision Custom cycle clothing business with my son Ben taking the helm. We are now in our 25th year.

Oh, and I won a few bike races as well!

Thank you Steve, great memories indeed! There is a book about – Pocket Rocket: the Autobiography of Steve Joughin Paperback – 11 Oct. 2010 by Steve Joughin (Author), Richard Allen (Author), John Quirk (Editor) 

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