Queen Jay at the National Road Race Championships

Following on from my preview of the National Time Trial Championships I managed to fire a few questions at Jay Burgess. who will be riding in both the TT & road race.

Jay  is the recently crowned women’s champion of Scotland for 10 mile and 25 mile time trials.  Her storming rides this year have earned her a place in the National Time Trial on Thursday and the National Road Race on Sunday.

I know you’ve been a wee bit ill recently Jay, but still planning to ride on Thursday and Sunday?

Absolutely! Illness has scunnered me in June for the last two years, meaning I have been poorly for the British RR champs but I am determined to ride this year.

You have picked up some good results this year, winning the Scottish 10m & 25m Time Trial championships. Well done!  Any other TT results you are proud of?

To be honest, those are by far my best TT results; I have picked up a couple of silver and bronze individual medals in TTs over the years so the Scottish 10 was my first individual gold. My time in the Scottish 10 was also really unexpected and it took a while for William (Jay’s partner) and me to believe that I’d won.

Is this your first ride in the National Champs TT?

I haven’t done a British level TT championship before so I am really looking forward to this new experience. I’ve made a lot of progress against the clock this year which has made me reconsider my attitude towards TTs.

How do you prepare for this race?
Any course recce-ing?

My preparation has been compromised by my chest/sinus infection so I am really focusing on getting well. I rode one lap of the course today (Sunday) to get my head around it. I would have like to do some race intensity efforts round the course but I am just easing back into the bike.

What is your goal in the TT?

 I will be setting myself a power output and average speed target. I try not to set results as targets in TTs; I can only control my own ride so I try to ignore what others will do. Obviously, I want to do well; I am just interested to see how my best compares to the very best in the world.  

How different does this feel  for you compared to a typical 10 or 25?
Does the fact it’s a National Champs on home soil mean anything?

I expect the atmosphere to be incredible. Because it’s a TT, I can rehearse and plan my own race so the anxieties I experience before a RR are, to a large degree, eliminated. Hopefully this means I can soak up some of the atmosphere!   

There is a strong mix of local riders and Olympic medal winners.
Who do you see as having the best chance of picking up the win in the Time Trial (apart from you!)?

I reckon Jo Rowsell is taking the TT pretty seriously. I saw her out on a recce today when I rode the course. Rebecca Slack has picked up some great results recently. But would you really bet against Julia Shaw? I wouldn’t!

And you are racing again on Sunday in the road race.
Have you carried out any prep work for that?

I want to have a ride round the RR course but, again, my chest/sinus infection has scuppered my plans. Plus, it looks like the course goes up some one way streets the wrong way. There’s still time though…

And which discipline do you prefer?

That’s getting harder to answer! Until the Scottish 10, I wouldn’t have hesitated: road. But now I am not so sure. There is a brilliant buzz in a RR but I am starting to enjoy the Zen state TTing requires. Can I answer that at the end of this season? (No bother!)

There seems to be growing interest in women’s cycling.
The Olympics last year certainly helped and I know there are many people working hard to raise the profile.  How have you experienced this?

Wow, yeah, it’s like a different sport. Even just in Scotland, the number of women regularly racing has rocketed in the last 12 months. It’s brilliant and I hope it continues.

I hope Jay recovers well and is able to put in a strong performance against the clock on Thursday.  And may the good form roll over to Sunday for the road race.

All being well I will try and catch up with Jay after her busy weekend to see how it all went.  You can follow Jay on twitter @scotiabikerbird

Good luck to Jay and all the home riders racing over the weekend!!!

Light it up!

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