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Lucy Garner “I feel I need a change”

Double Junior Road World Champion Lucy Garner is one of the new signings of the Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling team.  Born on 20 September 1994, the 21 year old from Leicester, Great Britain, has spent her entire professional career (starting in 2013) with the Liv-Plantur (former Giant-Shimano) team. At the moment Garner lives in Woudenberg, the Netherlands, with her boyfriend, cyclocross star Lars van der haar (Giant-Alpecin). An introduction of this incredible talented British sprinter.

Lucy started cycling when she was nine years old, starting out in the mountainbike and cyclocross disciplines. It was obvious that Lucy and her very talented little sister Grace would become a cyclist as her father has always been a keen cyclist himself. However, her father didn’t race very much, in contrast to her both grandparents, who were both racing cyclists. Garner went to watch a mountain bike race at the age of 8 and that’s is how it all started. She even rode a penny farthing that year.

Lucy Garner 7

Double Junior World Champion
Since that moment the young Brit has done it all, starting in MTB and cyclocross, moving to the track before finding her home on the road after progressing through the GB academy. In 2011 and 2012, Lucy made a name for herself by taking back to back wins in the road race at the Junior World Championships in Copenhagen (Denmark) and Valkenburg (The Netherlands); something that only the great Nicole Cooke had done before her. Six weeks prior to her second World title she also won the European Road Championships.

Lucy is also a talented track rider, winning two gold medals at the 2012 European junior track championships and she also has won medals at the British senior national track championships.

Her Junior World titles didn’t go unnoticed, and Garner signed her first pro contract with the Argos-Shimano team for the 2013 season. Garner remained in full-time education until 2012, when she left college having completed her A-levels. At the time she was taking English, Sociology, Psychology and Travel and Tourism classes.

Garner – who has Olympic Champion Marianne Vos, former World- and Olympic Champion Nicole Cooke and current Wold Champion Lizzie Armitstead as her role models – started her first pro season with a bang! That year she immediately won a stage in the Tour of Chongming Island and finished third overall. In 2014 she managed to finish second in the Drentse 8 and the Marianne Vos Classic and third in Westhoek. Her second professional win came last August when she won the first stage in the Route de France in a photo finish from Nettie Edmondson. Garner also managed to finish second in the Ronde van Gelderland.

“ It was a slow start to the season for me. I had knee injuries, which started in my winter training last year. It set me back a lot and I had to miss a lot of important training on the bike and also missed some of my goals. I worked hard with my physio to help me get back up to fitness as quickly and as safely as possible, and by the end of the season I was happy to get a win in Route de France and be able to compete in the World Championships.”

Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling
In September it was announced that Lucy Garner will be joining the Wiggle Honda team in 2016 on a two-year contract, after having spent her entire professional career to date with the Dutch Liv-Plantur team.  She looks forward to the opportunities that riding with such a professional and strong team will bring, and is grateful for the opportunities Liv-Plantur has given her in the past three years.

“Its been a huge step for me, not only as a rider but as a person.  When I joined Liv-Plantur I moved away from home at a young age and left everything behind me to pursue my dream of being a cyclist. I’ve learnt a lot in the last 3 years and I was given big chances in Liv-Plantur to develop my sprint against the best sprinters in the world. I have met a lot of great people and learnt a lot which I will be able to use in the future.” , Garner said.

Lucy Garner 4

 “But after three years with Liv-Plantur I feel  I need a change and that a change will be good for me. I want to make the next step in my career and Wiggle Honda were extremely passionate and keen to have me join the team. Even when my season hadn’t been the best due to injuries, and as an athlete who struggled a lot because of that, it was so refreshing that Wiggle Honda still believed in me as a rider. It is one of the best women’s teams in the world and I feel I can really learn and progress in this very strong team.

“Wiggle Honda have sprinters, Climbers, Classic riders – everyone.  I think they will achieve a lot next year and just carry on the success that they had this year. From an outsider the team work perfectly together. There may be a lot of big riders but they all work together to achieve the best result.”

Garner will be one of the sprinters of the Wiggle Honda team alongside Jolien D’hoore and Giorgia Bronzini, but the talented young Brit does see a lot of opportunities as well.

“There are a lot of big riders in this team. I am a sprinter and there are big sprinters on the team, which I hope I can learn from. I really want to build my engine, as I know that is one of my weaknesses against the other riders in the peloton. I’m really looking forward to helping the girls as much as I can to get the best results possible for the team!”

 “I feel like I am in a really good place at the moment. I know that I will be setting my own personal goals in the season to try and get a good result but for me to be able to lead out sprinters like Bronzini and D’hoore will give me a lot of experience on how to race a final and be in the right position etc. by helping them and I think that will really help me in the future for when I get the chance myself to sprint.”, thus Garner.

The 21-year old has to define her race schedule yet but she hopes to get her own chance in the Aviva Women’s Tour. Also a good result at the World Championships in Qatar are high on her target list.

“It is very early to say what my program will be as I don’t know what races I will be doing, but it would be great for me to target races like the Aviva Women’s Tour as I feel that type of racing suits me well and it would be great to get a result on home soil. Also the World Championship in Qatar next October is a big goal of mine, so I want to make the winter training count and hopefully get some nice results in the season to show I am capable of getting a result there.”


Garner who’s favourite race is the Tour of Flanders because of the atmosphere and its challenging route has started her winter training already to prepare for the new season. Every year she tries to change her training based on experiences from the previous years.

“I just try and learn from what I done from the previous years. It’s very important for me each year to make the next steps. More hours, more time in the gym in the winter. I’m motivated more than ever at the moment to start the season with Wiggle Honda so it makes the winter training a lot easier when you are mentally in a good way. “

Garner does these training rides at the moment in The Netherlands as she lives in Woudenberg with her boyfriend, cyclocross star Lars van der Haar (Giant-Shimano). The change of environment wasn’t the easiest but Garner has had a lot of help from Lars and his family.

“The change to The Netherlands has changed me a lot. My family did everything for me and I really appreciate everything they did. I left my friends and everything behind in England and moved to a completely different country, new roads to learn, new language, and new people. It was very hard the first year and I struggled a lot but now it is my home. Lars has helped me a lot and I think this step in my life has only made me a stronger person and cyclist.”

Lucy will join her new teammates for the first time in Calpe, Spain at the end of this month for the team’s first training camp for the new season.


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