In 2020 we are welcoming a new batch of riders to our rider journal series. We have picked six riders to give us an insight into Continental and elite-level racing, at both home and abroad. Last week, we introduced Jacob Tipper. Here we introduce our second rider: Savannah Morgan.
20-year-old Savannah Morgan will embark on her second season in Belgium next year.
Morgan has been racing for 5 years. As a junior, she raced for a UK team called Team22. In 2018 – her first as a senior – her season was interrupted when she had to have her appendix removed in June. Then, left without a team when her YRDP team folded, she decided to take the plunge and race in Belgium.
My cycling story is still pretty much unwritten. There’s a lot more I hope to do and plan to do, especially this year
This season, Morgan will race for the Isorex NoAqua team, for whom she expects to mix UCI road races with Belgian elite-level road racing (interclubs and kermesses). Still young, there’s likely to be plenty for her to reflect on as she keeps a journal for us next season. In her own words: “my cycling story is still pretty much unwritten. There’s a lot more I hope to do and plan to do, especially this year.”
Before she begins her rider journal journey with us, we asked her a few questions to find out a little more about her, how her 2019 season was and what her plans for next year are…
What led you to you riding in Belgium?
The team I raced for last season was called YRDP, it was a great initiative. The team wasn’t able to secure enough support to continue this season, however, so I was left without a team.
But I then managed to get onto a Belgian one. I had raced there a few times and thought I’d take a chance and join a team there. So I decided to race in Belgium as I wanted to give myself the best chance to make something out of the sport.
The women’s UK scene is lacking. It has very little appeal and I don’t feel I’m missing out by not being here
The women’s UK scene is lacking. It has very little appeal and I don’t feel I’m missing out by not being here. In Belgium, you can have 2 or 3 races every single week and the cost of them combined is cheaper than a National Road Series race over here.
How would you describe yourself as a rider?
I would say as a rider I’m pretty versatile but I love to race aggressively. I tend to go better in the harder and grippy courses which is definitely handy when being based in Belgium.
How would you rate your 2019 season out of 10? And why?
6 out of 10. I’m not afraid to admit it was a tough year. In terms of racing, I felt I ran out of time towards the end of the season, which was when I started to find my feet. It was my first time living abroad and it took me a while to feel settled. Luckily, I know what to expect now!
Tell us a bit about your situation for 2020. Where will you be based and who will you be riding for?
I will be based in Belgium again, from mid-February until the end of the season. Prior to that, I’ll be sun-searching in Calpe for a few weeks.
I will race for Isorex NoAqua LCT, a very well established women’s club team. Our calendar will be a lot of kermesses and interclubs, plus a strong UCI calendar. I’m really looking forward to racing with the team as they have great support for foreign riders.
How will you be supporting yourself next year?
As with this season, I have been unsuccessful in gaining financial funding for next year. Therefore I will be relying on the money I’ve saved from working multiple jobs over the winter. Sadly, the only cheap thing in Belgium seems to be the racing and the bakeries, so I’ll be in budgeting mode all season!
I will be relying on the money I’ve saved from working multiple jobs over the winter
However, I am very lucky that RedChilli Bikes, a British custom bike brand, have helped me with my race bike for next season. I’m really looking forward to doing them proud.
What will your first race be?
It’s a tough start to the year with 3 UCI races from 29th February to 3rd March: Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Omloop van Het Hageland and Le Samyn des Dames. I hope to be in the selection for some of these, before the kermesses start the following weekend. It will be a cold and savage first month, but should be a good indicator of where I am at.
What are your goals for 2020?
My main goal will be to show myself across the kermesses and interclubs, but also to be competitive in the UCI race, and get some real consistency in my results throughout the whole season. Plus, if I can make it until September without cracking too hard, I’ll be made up!
Find out more
Savannah on Twitter
Savannah on Instagram