Cycle Engage UK lanch Team RGB Building Supplies

Badger2Team RGB Building Supplies, Cycle Engage UK’s racing squad, launched last week. Following the NS tradition of featuring interviews with rider’s pets, the legend that is Badger sent us some info…

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An exclusive interview with Badger Goldensnout, Assistant DS and Service Course Manager of elite women’s cycling team Team RGB Building Supplies.

Cycle Engage UK, a community and cycling initiative based in Exeter has revealed their elite women’s road cycling team, title sponsored by the South West’s leading building supplies merchant RGB Building Supplies. Neutral Service have been granted an exclusive interview and access behind the scenes of this exciting new venture in this unique interview with the team’s Assistant DS and service Course Manager, Badger Goldensnout.

Image9Tell us about the team and who’s behind it.
Tom and Alice Staniford, with partner Phil Mingo of Pinnacle Photo Agency, are in charge of Cycle Engage UK and they’ve set up an elite women’s cycling team that will compete at most of the top events in the UK.

DS – Tom Staniford
Team Manager – Alice Staniford
Assistant DS and Service Course Manager – Badger Goldensnout
Riders:
Jenny Bolsom
Jenny Corser
Lucy Driver
Susan Freeburn
Hannah Newsham
Alice Staniford
Heidi Viles
Sophie Williams
Tom Staniford

Why has Cycle Engage UK set up an elite women’s team?
As you can see there are 9 riders on the squad – they’re all amateur cyclists from the South West (or nearby) and the idea behind the team is to provide a stable and professional base to support the riders to compete at the top level.

Racing at an elite level takes a lot of time, money and commitment. By being part of a team like Team RGB Building Supplies the riders can concentrate on their training, knowing that all their equipment and as much support as possible will be provided by the team to help them perform at their best.

We’ve selected riders who might not otherwise be picked for an elite team – our riders have full time jobs (or still at school in Sophie’s case) and perhaps are not destined to become the next World Champion. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t driven to train and race as equally hard as any rising star of British Cycling. Our team provides the platform and access to the top events giving these riders the chance to shine in their own right.

17800427_837676429703751_1490910845985098642_nHow does the team tie in with Cycle Engage UK’s aim?
Cycle Engage UK is all about encouraging participation in cycling. We run regular social rides and get involved in local cycling initiatives to introduce new people to cycling, promote sustainable transport and improve local cycling infrastructure. The team is an extension of this – we want to promote cycling as a sport that’s accessible to people of all ages and walks of life – that’s why we’ve chosen riders who aren’t ‘career athletes’ but much more like any other ‘girl next door’.

Team RGB Building Supplies riders participate in Cycle Engage UK social rides and events, promoting the message that cycling is for everyone.

What’s your role in the team?
As Assistant DS you can often find me in the team car, alongside DS Tom Staniford, overseeing racing, advising on tactics and ensuring that the girls’ food has passed very strict testing. My second role as Service Course Manager leads on from this: as well as managing food stocks, I’m in charge of the equipment so I check tyre pressure and make sure the bikes are all in working order before each race.

Sometimes I also operate as the team mascot (which I find rather denigrating) but it seems to provide high levels of moral support so I suffer on.

Which races will Team RGB Building Supplies be targeting?
Primarily the team will targeting the National Women’s Road Series and the Tour Series. They’ll also pop up at the National Championships (we have several Masters riders so we’re hoping to get a place on the top step this year as our riders have been on the podium several times already). We’ll also be at Team Series events such as Bedford Three Day as well as the international stage race the Ras na mBan.

Closer to home, we’ll be appearing in the local leagues where it fits with our training or doesn’t clash with a target event.