Matthew Gibson steps on to world stage with Tour De France winners Chris Froome, Sir Bradley Wiggins and sprint king Mark Cavendish
A LYMM teenager is rubbing shoulders with some of cycling’s greats while competing for Great Britain at the UCI Road World Championships in Italy.
Matthew Gibson, aged 17, has joined the likes of Tour De France winners Chris Froome, Sir Bradley Wiggins and sprint king Mark Cavendish as part of Team GB for the event in Tuscany.
Gibson claimed fifth place in the junior men’s individual time trial on Tuesday and lines up in the road race for the age category this Saturday.
“It’s a huge honour to be part of the British squad,” said Gibson.
“Sir Bradley Wiggins, Chris Froome and Mark Cavendish are people I’ve always looked up to, and still do, so to be on the same team as them is a real privilege.
“It’s a great challenge because all the top junior riders from around the world are competing.”
Gibson completed the 21.8km time trial course in 27mins 26secs, finishing 30 seconds behind winner and European vice-champion Igor Decreane, nine seconds off a medal position.
“I’m delighted with the performance,” said Gibson, who held the silver medal spot for part of the day.
“To get a top five finish is a fantastic feeling as I gave it everything, I learned how hard I can go which really helps and I’m already looking forward to coming back next year.
“This ride has given me a lot of confidence for the future.”
The Velocity WD-40 rider, who also represented Team GB at the UCI Junior World Track Championships in Glasgow this summer, has impressed his team sponsors.
“We are absolutely thrilled with Matt’s performance,” said WD-40’s Amy Briggs.
“For him to make such a big impression on the world stage is testament to the hard work of both Matt and the whole Velocity WD-40 team.”