In January 2017 I joined Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka Continental for the 2017 season.I am super exited for this opportunity – in my wildest dreams I would never have imagined riding a bicycle would become my job. There are not many people that can say that their job is their passion, mine is. Yes, it was a dream, and it is a dream come true based on hard work and sacrifice.
#bicycleschangelives has become a reality for me as it has changed my life. It has given me the opportunity to race my bicycle and to become competitive – it being my ultimate goal. Over the past two years I have seen the world, made friends, experienced life, not excluding the challenges I had to face.
Cycling has taught me many lessons, and one thing I have learned is that you need to be patient. My cycling career has only started, yet, I have experienced many setbacks.
I soon realized I needed to work harder, and surround myself with people who can support me. I am proud to say that I come from a rural area where the opportunities to excel was not always available. I was fortunate enough to meet up with coach Barry Austen, who provided me with the opportunity to spread my wings by racing in Europe as a junior.
In the first of two races this season I managed to secure a 5th position in the time trial, and a 6th position in the road race at the 2017 National Cycling Championships held in Wellington. As a first-year U/23 rider I feel satisfied with the result. Finishing the road race is also somewhat of a victory as only 33 riders of the 121 participants were able to finish. Preparation for the European cycling season commencing at the end of March is well under way.
I want to thank everyone for their support and involvement in my cycling career – you are all part of my dream come true as a cyclist!
Article by Louis Visser