Monday, November 30, 2009

Alex Dowsett 2009 Season Review - Part Three of Three


The final part of Alex Dowsett's review of his 2009 season:

"As you may have heard from this website now, off the back of the result at the World Time Trials I have signed for the Trek-Livestrong team!

It’s an incredible opportunity as I’ll be living in Colorado, America which is at 4,000m altitude and I’ll be racing all over the world for one of the most well respected development teams worldwide!

In the short term I have a training camp in Arizona in December, another one in California in January followed by our first race in Saudi Arabia on Feb 7th, the Tour of Qatar.

It’s going to be a good year!

Another apology for this blog update being so long - if you’re still reading: thank you!

I must add that all this time, crashes and races I’ve always kept on top of my Medication.

I’m on prophylaxis usually 3 times a week but take it according to when I’m on the bike.

Touch-wood I haven’t had any problems and everyone at The Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel and Healthcare has been incredibly supportive and I’d like to say a big thanks to them.

I’ll be in touch soon, with a briefer update I’m sure!"


Monday, November 23, 2009

Alex Dowsett 2009 Season Review - Part Two of Three


The second part of Alex Dowsett's review of 2009:

"I don’t think I’ve ever been so nervous before a race until the 23rd September 09 - after such a terrible season I felt my career depended on this one 42 minute race!

And last year it had gone very badly and not really for any obvious reason.

On the day I got my warm-up right and headed to the start line going over everything I’d planned over the last 2 months knowing it all came down to the next hour.

I knew the course - I’d been round it 3 times and watched it on DVD countless times: every corner, every incline and descent, every pothole, where I needed to rest, where I needed to really dig deep, where I needed to take my heart in my mouth and dive into a corner at 40mph knowing I didn’t need to brake!

I was well and truly in the zone, but there was the one thing that worried me, the one thing over which I had no control: the opposition!

I’d done everything I could but so had the other 65 guys taking to the line.

These guys were all selected for being the best time trialists from all the top cycling countries from around the world so it was a daunting prospect!!

I knew who the main men were: the defending champ Italian Adriano Malori who had beaten me by a minute over 10miles earlier in the year; Jack Bobridge from Australia who had already signed for a pro team; Marcel Kittel from Germany who beat me by 1min15 in the European Champs; plus a few more!

I concentrated on my ride, gear selections, position on the bike everything and was slowly catching my minute man which was a good sign but of course gave me no clue as to where I laid overall.

After completing the first lap of 2 my coach, Olympic Gold medallist Paul Manning told me I was sitting in 3rd place. I was relieved and although I wasn’t leading, with only 5 or 6 riders starting after me I knew I was on for a good result and really drove on.

I finished and was laying in 4th but 3 riders finishing after me that went quicker gave me 7th place.

I knew my future in cycling was secure! I knew I still had it in me after a year of a lot of self doubt and I knew I was able to compete with the best in the world!

With the relief came a feeling of being gutted, 16s over 41minutes of racing would have got me onto the podium in 3rd behind winner Jack Bobridge and an unknown Portugese rider, which left me thinking what could I have changed in my preparation to get them 16s.

It will have to wait for next year!"

In the final instalment we hear Alex's thoughts on being signed by Lance Armstrong's Trek-LiveStrong team!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Alex Dowsett 2009 Season Review - Part One of Three


Alex Dowsett has sent us his review of his 2009 racing season - in today's first installment we hear about all the problems he encountered early on:

"Hi everyone!

Firstly I must apologise for having not been in touch as much as I’d planned, it’s been a whirlwind season with a lot more downs than ups, but it’s ended on a high with 7th place in the Under 23 World TT champs in September and selection onto Lance Armstrong’s development squad: Trek-Livestrong, for 2010.

Everything started well and althought I was flying in March/April, but for a variety of different reasons I never came up with the results of which I was capable - as well as tactical mistakes on my part I endured crashes and stomach problems.

Then came my mid-season and with it came even more crashes (as you can see from the lovely photo of my leg after coming off at 40mph) plus the added hazard of losing too much weight.

Weight is vital in cycling, races are often won and lost on climbs and how much you're carrying up makes a massive difference.

There’s a very fine line between being totally on top of your game to being underpowered and asking yourself why - something I experienced the hard way! I’ll explain this in more detail another time.

I never really came around from this spell properly until the end of July when I went back to Italy for the last stint of the season.

August/September started badly.

It was selection time for some big stage races and I’d been chosen to represent GB in the Tour of Britain because of my skills of leading our sprinters out for the finish, but unfortunately the team fell through and I was left with no racing at all!

There was a glimmer of hope in getting into the Tour of Ireland with team Halfords but the logistics of guesting for another team bought that opportunity to a halt too. This left me with no racing at all and pretty disappointed.

However it was a blessing in disguise and allowed me to focus all my efforts into the Worlds Time Trial.

Being based in Britain for this period had its benefits: Mum’s cooking; Mum washing my clothes; Mum basically looking after me!

And of course being closer to my coaches Steve China and Paul Manning!

I raced in Britain a bit too, taking the Richmond GP and a few local Time Trial and Road race wins too.

I also took the U23 National Time Trial title too for a second year running!

I then went back out to Tuscany, Italy for a week, which is where the U23 GB team is based to get used to the hot conditions again and add the finishing touches to my preparation for the Worlds in Switzerland."

Next time in Part Two we hear all about Alex's preparation for his big race at the World Time Trial Championships and how the race itself unfolded!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dowsett signs with Trek-LiveStrong!


Alex Dowsett has signed for the US-based Trek-Livestrong squad, the under-23 development team created by Lance Armstrong to nurture the next generation of top riders!

Alex has been in demand since he came an excellent 7th in the under-23 time-trial at the World Championships in September.

Visit the Trek-Livestrong website for the full story:

http://www.treklivestrongu23.com/2009/11/dowsett-signs-with-trek-livestrong/