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Supporting young riders

WVCC has agreed to trial a youth development programme for the 2020 season, following work done to better understand why young riders often step away from cycling and the Club and whether there are steps the Club can take to better support and mentor riders as they progress from Whizz Kids.

This will involve:

  • Recruiting and supervising a small group of senior ‘role model’ racing mentors across the cycling disciplines to work alongside Club Coaches to provide advice on training and racing and riding opportunities.
  • Identifying a small group of supportable juvenile and junior riders who would benefit from and would agree to work with coaches and senior ‘role model’ mentors. All young riders would be eligible for mentoring support. 
  • For outstanding and committed juvenile and junior riders, brokering an arrangement with external expertise to provide a structured programme of support.  This takes the form of providing 50% of the funding required to join the Bryan Steel Youth Academy.  This Academy received excellent feedback from one of our juvenile club riders in 2019. The Club anticipates supporting three such riders as a guide but would be open to supporting more if merited.

Regarding the funding for the Bryan Steel Academy, the Club has opened a call for applicants for support to:

  • Submit their cycling CV; with
  • Either a covering letter or a short vlog demonstrating their commitment and setting out why they should be supported, and;
  • A supporting letter from a parent or guardian

To benefit from this support, riders should be juveniles or juniors as defined by the WVCC Club Calendar

The deadline is the 30th November 2019, and applications should be sent to Club Secretary Stuart Dawkins by email (

Following this, a sub committee consisting of Rowland Summerlin (Chair), Kevin Nicholls, Lorna Marlow and John Welsford will meet to make recommendations to the Committee, with a view to riders selected to receive external support starting in January 2020.

In addition, the Committee is always open to approaches to supporting young riders on a case by case basis.

The Committee recognises that riders may naturally progress to join bespoke racing teams. It is not the Club’s intention to go down this route, but to ensure talented riders progress with WVCC as far as it makes sense for them to do, and so are not lost to the sport along the way.

For more information please contact Jon Durnin in the first instance.

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