Journals Riders

Rider journals 2020: introducing Joe Laverick

The second-year U23 rider will be documenting his first season in France with AG2R La Mondiale's development team

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. So far, we have introduced Jacob Tipper and Savannah Morgan. Our third rider is Joe Laverick, who will enter into his second year at U23 level next season…

Readers of The British Continental will already be well aware of Joe Laverick. At the start of the year, we picked the then Madison Genesis rider out as one of our U23 riders to watch in 2019.

As he explained when we interviewed him earlier this year, this season, his first as an under-23 rider, was about adjusting to senior-level racing, as well as completing his studies. Despite the juggling act, he can still look back on a solid year of racing. He completed his first UCI races, was an important team member for Madison Genesis at the National Road Series, and picked up his first top 10 in National A road race, finishing 9th in the Bourne CiCLE Classic.

I had a look in Britain but with the state of the scene it was pretty clear to me that going abroad was the best bet for me

With his Madison Genesis team closing its doors, Laverick needed to look for a new team in 2020. After exploring his options, he has landed himself a spot at Chambery CF, one of the most successful top-tier elite teams in France. They are also AG2R La Mondiale’s development team and can count an impressively long list of World Tour riders as graduates, including Romain Bardet, Pierre Latour, Nico Denz, Nans Peters, Benôit Cosnefroy, Clément Chevrier, Kevin Geniets, Aurélien Paret-Peintre and Matteo Jorgenson.

Before he begins his journal, we caught up with Laverick to find out about his 2019 season, how the move to Chambéry Cyclisme Formation came about and what his goals are for next season…

Photo: Crimson Performance

How would you describe yourself as a rider?

As I’m still a young rider I wouldn’t put myself in a specific ‘box’. Traditionally I’ve been a time-trialist but I’m looking to broaden my horizons and turn myself into a bit more of a climber.

How would you rate your 2019 season out of 10? And why? 

6/10. It was always going to be tough stepping up to Madison Genesis while being in full-time education. From every direction, I was rightly told to focus on my education and I’d rate my A-Level results as a 9/10 but I’d be silly to pretend school didn’t affect my racing.

It was a year for physically and mentally maturing

It was a tough year but there were numerous highlights; from getting round the Volta Limburg (1.1) – my first ever senior race – to playing a part in Matt [Holmes] winning yellow in the Manx International. It was a year for physically and mentally maturing.

Tell us a bit about where will you be based in 2020 and who will you be riding for

I’ll be based in Chambéry, which is in the Rhone-Alpes region of France. It’s around 50 km from Annecy and 60 km from the Swiss border. I’ll be racing for Chambéry Cyclisme Formation (CCF), which is the AG2R La Mondiale under-23 team.

What led you to joining Chambery CF?

We were lucky to get the call from Madison pretty early which gave us plenty of time to look around. I had a look in Britain but with the state of the scene, it was pretty clear to me that going abroad was the best bet for me. I had talks with a few development teams which fell through and then Chambéry CF was brought to my attention. It started with a simple email which then led to a phone call. I did a bit of research and spoke to both the American and Aussie who were on the team this season. I was invited out to meet them in France, did a few fitness tests and the phone call came a few days after I’d landed back in England.

What will your first race be?

To be confirmed, but it’s likely to be a regional French race in early March.

HSBC UK National Time Trial Championships U23 Men Sandringham, Norfolk, England – Joe Laverick. Photo: Zac Williams/SWpix.com

What are your goals for 2020?

To prove myself as a rider. It’s hard to pinpoint a specific race because I don’t know exactly what I’ll be doing. I’ve had a year of learning from some of the best riders the British domestic scene has had and I feel I’m ready to take the step into the international under-23 scene. I’ve never done an under-23 race so I’m excited to get involved in them. I’m targeting ”in-between” one-day races, which are lumpy but not ridiculously mountainous, and I’ve historically gone best in stage races, so I’ll be targeting some throughout 2020. I’ve got unfinished business with time trial nationals too; I had an absolute shocker in 2019, it was embarrassing and I need to put that record straight.

Featured photo: Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com. HSBC UK National Road Series – Cycle 360 Manx International Stage 2 – Joe Laverick of Madison Genesis

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