Where do you live?
Photo: The effort tells as
Nicky rides to bronze in Manchester
What is your
occupation? Do you work full time?
Junior Sister (senior staff nurse ). Yes I work full time.
You’ve been working nights recently – is that usual? If so,
how does that affect your cycling?
Yes, I work 4-5 nights a month. I usually feel lethargic/ jet
lagged afterwards which can last up to a week.
Club / Team
are you currently riding for?
I have just joined a new team after the masters this year
which is Mid Anglia CC. Before that I was in Steve Goff Racing Team.
Who are the Club / Team sponsors?
Mid Anglia CC/ City Cycle Centre & Mark Zaschke
How long have you been member of the Club / Team?
Any previous Club(s)?
Border City Wheelers, Cambridge CC, Steve Goff Racing Team.
Do you have any personal sponsors?
For the last 5 years
it would be Steve Goff and the team sponsors for the support and
help whilst with him and for the end of last year to the City Cycle
Centre and Mark Zaschke.
How long have you been cycling?
Competively since 1996.
What made you start cycling?
wanted to take part in triathlon so started in 1995 however I
unfortunately had a bad accident in June of that year. One year
later I joined a cycling club to regain my confidence on the bike
and it went from there.
I remember you as a road racer and time tiralist – have you
always ridden the track too, or is this a recent development?
I rode grass track with Border City Wheelers for a season as a
bit of fun. The hard track came at a later date, started in 2003
through my boyfriend at the time, as he rode it. It was easier
taking part in the end, not just watching him!!
Do you do any other sports seriously? eg triathelete, swimmer,
No, not at present. Used to swim, horse ride and do triathlon.
How important is being a member of your club / team to you? What
activities do you undertake with other members? Do you get
significant support from other members?
I enjoy being a member of a team. Yes, I get
help with equipment, encouragement and we try and meet up for
rides and often are racing at similar events.
Do you have a coach? If so, who and for how long?
Yes- Auriel Forrester, since Sept 2005 and has been previously
What are your most significant results?
4th- National 100 mile TT championship
10th- National 25 mile TT championship (2001,
2nd – Rudy Project TT Series ( 2002, 2003),
6th BBAR (2002), 2nd-Duo’Normand TTT (2003),
National Masters Track Champs 2003- silver- 2 km pursuit
World masters Track Chamionships 2003- bronze-2km pursuit
National Masters Track Champs 2004- gold-2km pursuit; silver- 10 km
scratch race (30-40).
National Masters Track Champs 2005- gold-2km pursuit (35-40);
silver-500m TT (35-40).
World Masters Track Champs 2005- bronze – 2km pursuit (35-40).
When / who realised that you have a talent for cycling?
NP: Cycling became what I enjoyed the most when I participated
in triathlon. Mark Wilcox encouraged me whilst in Border City Wheelers
and since have received encouragement from significant people along
the way; Auriel Forrester, Keith Moore, Duncan Alexandre, Theresa
Coltman, Mark Nixon, Sean Bannister , Rachel Horn,
Lol Berman, Michael Hutchinson, Mark Zaschke, my family,
friends and work colleages to name a few.
When / why did you begin to concentrate on track?
I started on the hard track in 2003 but probably concentrated
on it more last year in between moving house, working etc!!
podium after receiving bronze
How many Masters have you ridden – GB / World level? Do you
prefer it to other types of competition?
3 at GB and
World level. Yes I really enjoy it. It is really friendly, everyone
is very supportive of one another, you meet lots of different people
and it’s a great atmosphere. It is different to other types of
The Masters went on for 6 days – that’s a long competition.
How many days were you involved for?
For 2 of those, the TT and pursuit.
You were concentrating on the pursuit at the Masters
Championships, do you see this as your specialism? Why / why not?
I think with my time trialling background I’m probably more
physiologically suited to this event, however do enjoy the other
track events as well
What is it about these events that get you excited / motivated /
why do you enjoy them?
I enjoy the atmosphere at the track, it is exciting and I get
a real buzz from the racing on it! I’m also still learning as
it’s still relatively new which motivates me as I like a
You took bronze at the Masters in the pursuit – congratulations
– how pleasing for you was this?
Yes I was pleased as my training had recently taken a nose
dive due to buying my own house and moving in August ’05. I was a
lot fitter for the nationals, so I was pleased to get a medal.
Did the times you recorded at Manchester compare to times you
have been doing in training?
Yes, it was a fair comparison.
How far do tactics play a role in the pursuit? Several riders
were telling me about being caught (and eliminated) by riders who
were not capable of recording any near equivalent overall times.
(The implication that those riders simply sprinted to catch their
I personally don’t adopt this method, however I know others
do. You have to be very confident on your sprinting ability and have
some knowledge of the opposition’s form. I generally ride to a pre
worked out schedule.
For your own pursuit events, how technical is your approach? Do
you ride to lap times or a schedule? How much in control of your
overall effort and result are you in a pursuit?
Yes, as I’ve just mentioned I ride to a schedule, worked out by me
and my coach. You get to know what a 19 second lap feels like from
previous training sessions at the track, and you get feedback from
your coach every lap.
You try to be in as much control as physically you can. There is
also a mental element as in all races!!
How much do you work on that?
I work on my starts and pacing at training sessions at the
track when I can get there. I also try and get to Wellwyn track
league when possible to gain more confidence with other riders in
the bunch races.
Do you rely on ‘feel’, or do you test regularly to know how
you are going? If you test, what testing do you use?
I do both. Testing is done with my coach
on the turbo.
How difficult is it to
train for your events? Do you get to ride indoors, say at
Manchester, very often?
Yes I get to ride indoors at Manchester/Newport but it is
limited due to travelling/costs and limited sessions.
The 2km Pursuit podium - L-R, Tabatha Cole, Janet Birkmyre and Nicky
Where is your nearest track / how far away is it?
Welwyn outdoor track, it’s about an hours drive away.
How often do you get to ride it?
I try and do Friday nights (track league) when work
Do you do a lot of road work? Work on the turbo trainer?
Yes, both. I still compete in time trials also.
What does a typical training week look like for you?
variable due to my shift work and depending on what I’m targeting
at the time.
What about winter work? Do you get out in the winter?
Yes, but this winter hasn’t gone to plan so far!!
Any other training / cross training / weight training that you do
at any time?
I try and do gym/core stability in the winter but this year am
struggling to fit my cycling in due to work commitments, so have had
to give this a miss. Hopefully I may have more time later.
How do you get exposure to other competition? Do you ride with
the seniors very much? Track leagues?
Yes, track leagues and some women’s omnium events that are
Do you find yourself racing against the same people all the time?
If so, does that get monotonous? How do you stay fresh?
No, I say fresh by not over racing
(an old habit from long ago!) and my doing some time
trialling as well as track racing.
What about tactics - who helps you with tactics and / or
knowledge of your competitors?
My coach (Auriel) and by observing and racing against them.
Do you spend a lot of time studying your competition, to inform
your racing against them?
race against them which helps. Otherwise, I get on with me and try
not to worry about them as I can’t control them but can control
what I do.
Do you have a favourite track? If so, why?
Welwyn. I seem to race best on here as I’ve probably spent
the most time on it.
How difficult is it to switch between velodromes like Manchester,
which is known as a pursuiter’s track
and the outdoor tracks such as Halesowen, Welwyn, Herne Hill.
Do you ever ride at Newport? How do you prepare yourself for
different track types?
It is different. I try and get some training sessions on the
indoor tracks to prepare.
What about getting aggressive and focussed for racing - does that
just switch in, or do you have to work yourself up for it? (If so,
what technique(s)) do you use?)
it comes naturally and other times need to work at it. I listen to
music, think positive thoughts and visualize the race and go through
it in my head step by step so I feel in control.
How do you see the state of women’s track racing in the UK at
the moment? Where do you see it going in the future?
I think it is very positive, especially with our own Vicky Pendleton
doing so well. I think it will continue to improve as I think she
has inspired and encouraged a lot of riders. She is a very positive
What are your plans for 2006? Main goals / aims?
For a similar season as last year. I’ll probably do a bit
more in the way of bunch racing on the track. My aims will be
GB/World Masters track champs again.
And longer term, what are your plans and goals?
To keep fit, be healthy, be happy and enjoy life!!
What bike(s) do you ride?
Steve Goff’s, as I got them built for me when I was riding
Any particular piece of equipment or kit that you 'just love'?
My Steve Goff road bike as it survived a very big crash in
Spain. I call it my survivor….a bit like me really after my trials
and tribulations in life!!
Do you take a general interest in cycling – do you follow the
road (the Tour, Tour of Britain etc), track cycling (do you go to
Revolution / World Cups etc), do you follow women’s racing, or
Yes, I love
cycling. I always watch the Tour, I will miss Lance this year , he
too was a very admirable survivor. I enjoy watching the track
racing, especially as I participate in this myself. I watched a
Revolution event in November last year, which was fantastic. I
always enjoy watching Vicky [Pendleton] as I think she is a great
role model for female cycling. She has a very professional approach
to her cycling and when off the track is just a really nice, down to
earth person. I was working at the World Cup Track event in 2005,
helping out with the dope control, as they need a nurse for UCI
events, however I got to see some of the racing too which was good.
Do you have any cycling heroes? If so, who and why?
Yes, Lance Armstrong, due to him facing adversity in a very
strong and admirable way. Also for coming back from this and winning
the tour several times, which was amazing. He is a role model and
inspiration for anyone facing a challenge in life. Vicky Pendleton
for being an amazing cyclist on the bike and a down to earth human
being off the bike.
What about other sport heroes? / Life in general? (Why?)
Graeme Obree for his honesty about his life and cycling in his
recent book, I’m sure this has helped a lot of people who suffer
from depression. Any disabled athlete for the challenges they face
every day and how they just get on with it. My Mum, my Dad and my
brother for the gifts they have given me and for what they’ve
taught me. Sally Walters for what she has taught me in my job, for
challenging me and for her great gift with people.
What are you interested in when not cycling?
Spending time with my friends and family, reading, gardening (
a new hobby!), cooking, watching films, travelling and exploring new
parts of the world, painting and drawing (however haven’t pursued
this hobby for a while due to lack of time), listening to music,
relaxing and catching up with sleep!
Is there anyone / people in particular you would like to thank
for helping you to get to where you are today?
My Mum, my Dad (even though he is now not with us, he was the
one who fuelled my passion for sport), my Brother, Keith, Auriel,
Theresa, Sean Bannister, Mark Nixon, Mark Wilcox, Duncan Alexandre,
Steve Goff, Border City Wheelers, Cambridge CC, Mark Zaschke and all
my family, friends and colleagues who have been behind me all the
thanks to Nicky Peters for her time!