On the 26th January (2020), the winners of the 2019 season will be presented with their awards as well as the clubs/teams which they represent. Also, other clubs/teams that are affiliated to the league and have gained Surrey League points, thanks to their riders, will receive their cash reward.

For 2019, the winners are;

  1. Vets Series (Over 40) – Steve Calland
  2. Vets Series (Over 50) – Craig Wilson
  3. Vets Series (Over 60) – Andy Grant
  4. Overall Male – Kevin Nelson
  5. Overall Female – Alexis Barnes
  6. Overall Junior – Ethan Court
  7. Overall Handicap – Henry James
  8. Club – Southdown’s Bikes CASCO Pet Racing Club

Also, we decided to ask all the winners a series of questions (10) to gain an insight into their training methods, hours put in, and their favourite Surrey League event.

Questions asked;

  1. What was your favourite SL event in 2019 and why?
  2. What are your ambitions for 2020?
  3. During the racing season, how many hours do you dedicate to training/racing?
  4. During the ‘off-season’, how many hours of training do you do?
  5. What motivates you to continue training?
  6. What type(s) of training do you do during this ‘off-season’ period (gym, turbo, turbo with Swift, Wattbike, other sports, cycling (ie getting the miles in), or a combination of the above)?
  7. As per Velominati’s Rule 12 (n+1 – n being the number of bikes you currently own), how many bikes do you actually own and what is your current race bike?
  8. When out on the open road during the ‘off-season’, do you ride with friends and/or club/teammates, or ride alone, or a bit of both?
  9. Cycling takes up a lot of time and can be disruptive to your working life, so does your employer cater for allowances to cover this?
  10. Do other members of your family enter races, actively train, or enjoying cycling?

Craig Wilson responds with;

  1. Bring back Parham Park put on by Southdown’s Bikes. It’s a great circuit with a mix of estate roads and tarmac (more of this please). Let me know of any potential circuits or gravel sections.
  2. Healthy and Happy.
  3. 6-8 hours. Just racing a couple of times a week is enough for an old boy. 3 hours racing and the rest is just gentle spins.
  4. 8 – 12 with occasional big 20 hour weeks away in the sun.
  5. I like training in the winter with no structure and mix it up with MTB and gravel – great fun. Then in the season I just enjoy racing in a bunch and the challenge of trying to keep up with the youngsters. I like winning races and have no interest in Strava, Zwift or sharing power files – who cares about the process of training as races are what counts!
  6. Gravel and MTB fun riding with zero power files or structure. A weekly spin session helps me keep an eye on my numbers and 2-3 core or weights sessions. Save your mental energy for the races when it counts.
  7. Sarto – lost count of the number of bikes!! There’s always a clean one to ride!
  8. Group of 2-4. Large groups go too fast and get too competitive, get too many punctures and cause grief with traffic. 2-4 is time-efficient yet social.
  9. I try not to work too much! I am happier at home and work if I am cycling. Most people can fit 6-8 hours in if they get organised with a cycle commute, lunchtime spin session, and a weekend ride.  It’s healthy eating that is more difficult!
  10. No – for some strange reason, I produced theatre and art lovers! I am the sporting cultural wasteland in my family!

Andy Grant responds with;

  1. Vets Series – good fast racing!
  2. Improve.
  3. 10 hours a week.
  4. 5 hours of training and racing.
  5. Race all year round Cross/Track/Road.
  6. Cross/Cross-training with some road rides.
  7. N/A
  8. Both.
  9. I am the employer and ‘No’ he doesn’t.
  10. No.

Kevin Nelson responds with;

  1. It would have to be the 3-day. It was the week after a Majorca training camp and I only entered as the wife and kids were away and fancied a weekend of riding. I had no real ambitions and so to win was a real shock.
  2. In 2019 my focus was to just enjoy racing and do races that I would enjoy and that motivated me. This worked pretty well and I achieved far more than I thought I would. Therefore I am taking a pretty similar approach to this year, enjoy racing and establish myself at Nat B level.
  3. Having a family with 2 young children I have to balance this and try to aim for about 10 hours a week but ensure that I am consistent in this. Over 2019 my total riding time was just over 520 hours so pretty much got it spot-on.
  4. As above I don’t really drop off the volume in winter however switch to a much higher ratio of indoor turbo and greater quality.
  5. Racing and getting results. All I need to do is think about a race that I want to do well in or a race where I have maybe not performed and that is all I need to get me through pretty much any session.
  6. I do the majority of my winter training indoors on the turbo although recently just upgraded to a Wattbike. Previously I have relied heavily on Trainerroad and their plans however as we have recently formed the Crawley Wheelers Race Team partnering with Trainsharp Cycle Coaching, I am now under the careful supervision of them.
  7. I’m up to 4 if you include the Wattbike. My BMC Timemachine Road is my main race bike and I love the fact it has disc brakes. I also have a Giant TCR that I use during the winter and for commuting, however, I have still raced on this quite a bit. I also purchased a Boardman TTE for time trials last summer. After I got my 1st cat license last year I fancied adding a bit more variety to my racing so I started doing a few TTs. The wife was a big fan of the volume of wine for prizes.
  8. Generally, I get out for a club ride once a week but depending on family commitments may have to head out solo.
  9. I’m lucky that our office is fairly flexible and so in the summer when I have an evening race, I will generally just come in an hour early and then leave a bit early. In the winter I then often go the other way where I train in the morning and then come in shortly after 9 am.
  10. My wife started riding about 18 months ago to lose the baby weight when we had our daughter. She didn’t really care about the riding and was just focused on the turbo to lose weight. Since then she has done a couple of Majorca trips, completed Ride London and also entered 5-10 races and is a full convert. Because of the busy family life, about 99% of her riding is on the turbo/Wattbike due to the ease of just being able to get a high-quality workout in an hour.

Alexis Barnes responds with;

  1. My favourite event would have to be the Stolen Goat Women’s Series at Dunsfold Park. The main reasons being its close proximity to where I live but more importantly, it’s a friendly group to race with on a safe course that doesn’t have any hills! I can’t get much better than that.
  2. I don’t have any specific ambitions but given I am due to have another baby in April, my main goals are to regain some fitness and try to ride my bike a bit more than I have currently been. I don’t think I will be racing anytime this year!
  3. A lot less now than before children! Previous build-ups to race seasons would be anywhere from 12-15hrs a week. Last year I started the season with what I thought would be a manageable 4hrs a week training and a race but towards the end, all I could manage was to dust the bike every Friday and turn up to the race! Not ideal but it was just nice to get out and get some fresh air and race.
  4. Again, a lot less than I did before I had children!! (prior to children, probably around 6-8hrs training). Off seasons now consist of the very occasional social ride and definitely no structured training plan.
  5. I think my main motivator towards training last year was to do something that wasn’t baby related and to prove to myself that I could still ride and race a bike!
  6. Typically off session training will just involve a mixture of cycling including the turbo, MTB’ing, and road.
  7. I currently own two road bikes. An Orbea Orca and a Fuji Transonic Elite, my race bike. I also own a BMC FS01 MTB.
  8. Typically training during the off-season and in race season it’s a solo affair. To achieve the outcomes set by the coach, especially interval training, training has to be focused and specific, so no time for chatting. Longer weekend rides may be a different story. Pretty boring stuff really.
  9. As a nurse, I had the luxury of being able to work a mixture of bank and agency shifts, hence choosing my own rota. However, my other job at a bike shop meant 5 am wake ups to train before the traffic and work.
  10. Yes, my husband, Gareth has also been an active member of the cycling community, racing, and training mainly for mountain bike and TT events. My daughter is currently trying to work out how a balance bike works.

Ethan Court responds with;

  1. The event I most enjoyed was Chiddingfold 2/3 road race, it suited me as a rider with no really steep climbs and a good bit of downhill.
  2. Win my first surrey league road race and e/1/2 circuit race.
  3. Usually around 6-12 hours depending on racing and college.
  4. Around 6 hours during the start of the off season as long as I’m not waiting for my collar bone to heal, and ramping it up towards the race season.
  5. To do better in races and make the races not hurt as much xD.
  6. Zwift races and interval sessions and longer endurance rides outdoors.
  7. 3 bikes, one race bike, one CX bike and one training bike.
  8. I prefer to ride with others as long as they are the same fitness level or better unless I’m doing very specific intervals.
  9. Stick to short turbo sessions in the week and keep the longer rides to the weekends.
  10. No, but they support my racing and riding in every way they can.