Biker ‘races’ towards his dream

2018-06-26 06:00
PHOTO: supplied Alan Hatherly is currently taking part in the International Cycling Union World Championships in Europe.

PHOTO: supplied Alan Hatherly is currently taking part in the International Cycling Union World Championships in Europe.

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HILLCREST born Alan Hatherly started mountain biking at the age of eight but getting injured while racing did changed his perception towards the discipline.

The 22 year old said that what made not quit, even after he got injured, was his father.

“My dad was definitely a major influencer. After having a successful career in racing bicycles, he passed his passion for the sport over to me and we both raced together in different age categories until I joined my first professional cycling team at 16 years old,” explained Hatherly.

He said that the youth shouldn’t let minor obstacles stop them from achieving their goals in life.

Hatherly is champion mountain bike rider and is currently taking part in the International Cycling Union World Championships in Europe. He said competing on a global scale at such a young age has been a real eye opener for him.

“The level of racing in Europe is way higher in the youth, so for us the racing seems really fast but to them it’s normal because that’s how they were introduced to racing.”

“Once you wrap your head around the difference in speed, and work out how to bridge the performance gap, then it’s just a matter of experience and patience to chase the podium positions.”

He is also an ambassador for the Spur Schools MTB league.

His message to the youth that want to embark on a journey of being a mountain biker is that the most important factor is being patient.

“I see a lot of parents nowadays pushing their children into training programmes and incorporating gym work into their training at a really young age – honestly, I only started with a serious coach and gym work half way through my matric year.

“For the younger children, there would be a much larger benefit in rather pursing technical training and maybe even some downhill racing to improve their skills. These skills can’t be improved over night and it’s worth way more in the long run,” added Hatherly.

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