Many young Australian cyclists aspire to take their love of the sport to the next level and head overseas. In 2018 Australian cyclist Scott Reynolds is about to do just that! Scott will leave his home in Sydney to race for French team Charvieu Chavagneux Isère Cycling next season and we find out what it takes to get yourself a place on a European team.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what first got you into cycling.
My first day on my first road bike was when I was about 11 years of age. I rode up the street and around the block, doing about 5km and all I can remember is being super tired but having a smile on my face. My dad was the person responsible in getting me into cycling and after watching the tour de France, it’s hard not to get on a bike. I started in 2008 the year after I moved to Australia from South Africa, where I was born and grew up.
How did the opportunity to ride in Europe in 2018 on the Charvieu Chavagneux Isère Cycling Team come about?
I’ve always been interested in racing overseas and pushing my cycling to another level. The opportunity came about thanks to a great friend of mine, Danny Gatt. Danny with his business Danny Le Gatt Tours runs travel tours to France for races like the Tour de France. With the help of Danny I got the details to a team over in France. Even though I knew it would be a long shot I sent through my resume with a few things about myself and some of my results. A couple of weeks later after a lot of translated emails I got the news that I would be joining the team for the 8 month season.
You’ve been racing with the Mainpac Cycling Team (MTOSS) this year in Australia. How have they taken your news?
I have been racing for the MTOSS racing team this year and with the news there was sadness, as some of the guys are like family and I wouldn’t be racing with them next year, however they were overcome with excitement for me. All the boys and the team were happy and excited for me and all were on edge waiting for the news to come through.
Pouvez-vous parler français?
Bonjour, comment cá va?
Truth is no, but no one said going away from home and out of Australia was going to be easy. Let’s say I’m doing almost more training on learning French right now then actually on the bike. Stretch and French are now daily jobs.
You’re still pretty young, how do your parents feel about you heading off to Europe? Or are they going with you?
No I’m off on my own for the 8 months but they are not too bad about it. They obviously are concerned but they know I’ll be okay as I know how to look after myself in terms of living away from home. Plus now they don’t have to have tyre marks all over the house floor!
What can you tell us about the training you’ve done to get to your current level? Is it very structured and do you have a coach?
So the biggest thing that’s helped me is consistency in my riding and remembering to recover. I’ve realised this through my coach that I’ve had for a few years now. I would almost put our partnership as one of the best things I’ve done to improve my cycling. As well as this a good mate, James Lamb “Coach Chops”, has been coaching me for 2-3 years now. What works well is that it is structured but also designed around my life. Most of all is that it’s always different in what’s coming up and it’s not a structure that someone has copied.
Where would you like this opportunity to take you in the future and what are your goals as a cyclist?
My goals for the future are to join a pro continental team and take my cycling to its highest level. My biggest goal ever since I started riding is to represent my country in cycling and to wear the country's colours would be a dream come true.
What tips do you have for young cyclists wanting to take a similar path and head over to Europe?
My biggest tip is to have fun when riding - make sure your training is fun. Don’t be scared to try different disciplines of riding as well to test different skills and to keep it fun. I’ve ridden and raced track, road, MTB in different styles, cyclocross and even tried unicycle just for the fun.
We wish Scott all the best for his adventure in 2018 and look forward to updating on all of his success.