Full Name: Lydia Boylan
Rider Category: Elite
Disciplines: Road and Track
Career highlights: Winning three National Titles on the track in 2012 and riding to 2nd place with the Irish National Team at Rás na mBán.
Rider strengths: I’m not sure I’ve found my real strength yet. I started off as a sprinter then changed into a climber; I’d like to think I’m a good all rounder.
Ambitions for 2013: I’m looking to gain more road racing experience, getting a few European UCI races under my belt and doing well in the Irish National Road Race in June.
Favourite race and why: The Points Race – it’s a really good mix of sprint, speed, endurance and a little bit of luck!
Your first bike? I don’t remember when I learned to cycle as a kid. I should maybe ask my Dad! But I do remember getting a purple mountain bike from Santa one Christmas. My real cycling career started with my first road bike 3 years ago.
How did you get into cycling? My car died and I needed a way to get around Dublin, so I decided to get a bike and thought I might as well get one of these ‘fancy’ race bikes and take up a new sport. I did my first race in the summer of 2009 (a 3-up TT in which I crashed!) and I guess the rest, as they say is history.
What’s your daily commute like? I ride from South East London to the City every day – it’s just over 10 km each way.
Your favourite cycling memory? I’ll never forget the feeling I had crossing the finish line to win my first National Championship.
Touring tales: I did my first cycling holiday last summer in the Rhone Alps. I learnt many things like its cold at the top of a mountain and one should always bring a gilet and arm warmers! One of the highlights was taking part in a mass start time trial up Alpe d’Huez; I set myself the target of under an hour and I did it with a few to spare!
Tips to women thinking about giving cycling a go or getting back on a bike? Get a good saddle and a good pair of shorts! Try to hook up with other women to ride with and finally don’t be afraid to ask questions.