Q&A: Beth Maciver

Quiz time for 20 year old Scottish Circuit Race Champion Beth Maciver of the Alba Development Road Team who is from Inverness way up in the north of Scotland and only started racing in 2021!

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Q&A: Beth Maciver

Quiz time for 20 year old Beth Maciver of the Alba Development Road Team who is from Inverness way up in the north of Scotland. Beth is studing Physiotherapy at University in Glasgow and only started racing in 2021! Here is Beth’s Q&A:

1. How did you come to race bikes?
Beth: I was always sporty growing up and spent my time training and competing in athletics. I fell out of love with the sport and took up distance running to keep fit. I started to do a little bit of cycling and when lockdown came around in March 2020, I started increasing the time I spent on the bike. It didn’t take long for me to fall in love with cycling and I couldn’t wait to start racing so when racing returned in 2021, I tried to make the most of it!

2. Starting a new season in a new team with a very distinctive look – what are the goals for 2022 wearing the new colours and what’s the most exciting thing for you joining the new team?
Beth: The goals are to target the National Road and Circuit Series with the potential for some racing abroad too. The team aims to help each rider develop and provide support to help us all maximise our potential in racing. The priority is assist us in moving onto the next level. I’m really excited to be joining a team with this pathway in mind as I would love to be able to make a career out of the sport one day and I believe that joining Alba in 2022 will provide me with a fantastic support network during the race calendar.

3. How difficult was 2020?
Beth: Since I didn’t have any race experience before I started in 2021, I felt very motivated during 2020 to train hard so that I could try and make the most of the opportunities I had to race in 2021. I definitely got stronger over the year. Racing on the virtual platform, helped me gauge my progress and provided me with some competition even if it was virtual! I was able to build confidence in my strength on the bike and became eager to gain experience in road racing.

4. What was the highlight of your racing in 2021?
Beth: My first road race being the CiCLE Classic would definitely be up there. I did puncture twice during the race but still managed to finish and learn lots from it! My other would have to be winning the Scottish National Crit Championships. Everything went to plan that day and I was so happy to come away with the win!

5. What race is the one that gives you the biggest buzz and motivation when out training in the cold and damp?
Beth: The British National Road Race Champs (Lincoln GP). Going into the race, I had been ill for two weeks running up to the race and hadn’t managed to get the right preparation in for it. I think that the course suited my style of racing well and I definitely have some unfinished business with Michaelgate!

6. What’s the furthest you have travelled for a bike race in 2021 and is travel a chore or a joy (seeing pastures new) to do when going to a bike race?
Beth: The furthest I have travelled will have been to Melton Mowbray from Inverness for the CiCLE Classic. I actually really enjoy the travelling side of going to a bike race. I love visiting new places (especially if I can take my bike!) and since my parents are incredibly kind and drive me to races, it allows me to focus on the race itself and not have to stress about the travelling.

7. How much training (hours and/or days) do you do in a given week in the winter and how does that differ from the summer when you are racing?
Beth: I try to train anywhere from around 12 to 20 hours a week. It just depends on how busy that week is and what the focus for the week is. Summer training is pretty similar but there is probably more weeks that have fewer hours of training as there is more raceing which requires my legs to be fresher!

8. Do you train on a training bike or a race bike?
Beth: I train on my race bike as I don’t have a training bike! I do however have my own race bike and another that I got from Movistar as I am part of their Esports team.

9. Do you cross train at all (running, swimming, gym or other disciplines like MTB)?
Beth: I do some gym work and will be trying to incorporate this more into my training over the winter. I train at the velodrome in Glasgow a couple of times a week which I think will be extremely helpful to my road racing ahead of next year. And I race on Zwift during the winter which I think helps to maintain some of my top end throughout the winter months.

10. Where is your favourite training ride?
Beth: My favourite place to ride my bike is around the Cairngorms. I love the climb and all the beautiful scenery it has to offer. It’s also very close to home which is such a bonus – can’t beat it!

11. What type of race suits you best?
Beth: I really enjoy punchy races that require a lot of time in the red and not a lot of time to recover. I think I perform best in these kind of races and also like a sprint finish. The kind of race that might be described as ‘attritional’ – that’s right up my street!

12: Of the races you have done so far, what is the most enjoyable event on the British calendar?
Beth: The CiCLE is mentioned once again! It is such a fun route that is so unlike anything else on the British calendar. So much can go wrong in this race but it had such an exciting atmosphere surrounding it and I enjoyed every minute of it. I’m just hoping for some more luck next year!

13. What will be one big race you want to be part of in 2022?
Beth: Probably the National Road Race Championship. Lining up with some of the biggest names is such an amazing opportunity to test the legs and hopefully I’ll be able to test the legs properly next year! I’m also really looking forward the town centre crits. They sound like they’re full of chaos and that really excites me.

14. Finally, who do you want to thank for helping you get to this point in your cycling career?
Beth: My parents are unbelievably supportive of me and my desire to race my bike. They drive me up and down the country and are always there to support me during the race. I really appreciate everything they do for me! I’d also like to thank my previous team manager Doog and his partner Zosia, for giving me a place on Torvelo Racing when I had no previous race experience apart from Esports.

They were full of so much encouragement all year and did everything in their power to help me get to the start line in some of the British National Road Race Series. Without them, I would not have had the opportunity to develop and gain experience at this level. And finally I’d like to thank Bob (manager of the Alba team). He has also played a part in my development over the last year and given me an amazing opportunity to take my development to the next level in 2022. I’m so excited to see how Alba progress over the next year and will definitely be making the most of it.

Good luck to Beth for 2022, was great to read about your mega start in the sport… 


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