It’s happening embarrasingly frequently at the moment, but I was inspired by a post on Veloresults again- an interview with Glasgow Wheelers rider Dougie Young, who is going to Belgium for 9 weeks this summer. A rider I know a little more closely, Jack Barrett is also racing abroad this summer so I thought he deserved a bit of exposure too.
How old are you now- have you left school?
I’m 17. I’ve just decided to stay on for 6th year. It’ll give me a bit more stability, and also I will be quite flexible with my time so will be able to train.
You’ve improved a lot this year- how did you manage it with school?
In the winter when it was dark, I was getting up early to spin on the turbo in the morning- which meant I was falling asleep a bit in class in the afternoon! Other than that it was just long winter runs, training with the fast guys in Stirling Bike Club, and then chaingangs and lots of racing.
So what are your plans for the summer?
I’m away too do a French Stage race a week on Friday (the Tour Valomrey) – I got selected to go as part of a Scottish junior team. It’s a four-day stage race in the Rhone-Alpes. It’s very hilly, each stage is 100k and there are some 1st category and hors category climbs in it.
Which other riders are on the team?
Matt Hamilton, Grant Ferguson, James Smith and Taylor Johnson. It’s an U18 team and selection was pretty close, so I’m really pleased to be going.
Were there any results in particular that qualified you for the team?
No- it was a bit of everything really. I enjoy getting in breaks and taking part in the race, even if the final result doesn’t always come off. Scottish Cycling look at your motivation and teamwork as well as your actual results. Your mental approach is important too.
What’s your best result so far though?
Probably last weekend at the Arthur Campbell, where I got top 10. It was on the Anderside course that is used for the national championship.
Back to the French race: what are your expectations and goals? It sounds really tough!
First of all, just to finish really, but I’d like to take part in the race, work well with the team and help Grant, who come from a mountain biking background and is a strong climber. He rides for Dooleys and was 12th in the Davie Bell the other week.
Then you’re going to Belgium?
I’m getting dropped off in Belgium after the Tour Valromey and staying in a youth hostel there from July 15th till about the 31st, not far from where Dougie and Finlay are staying.
After that some of us are going to try and join a Scottish track training camp in Alkmaar. We’re hoping to get a ride if we ask nicely! I don’t know too much about it but I expect guys like Evan Oliphant and James McCallum will be there trying to hone their track form for the Commonwealth Games.
Have you done much track then?
Not a huge amount but I’d like to get into it. I’m doing the track championships later in the year down in Wales- the pursuit and the scratch race or the points race. After that I’ve got the Tour of Wales- it’s really busy but I’m excited about it.
I was going to ask you about cyclocross but it sounds like you’ll need a rest in the winter!
Yes, I’ll probably have quite a quiet winter, take a wee while off and maybe do some cyclocross later on.
Plans for next year?
Just more of the same, and move up a level!