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Dave Brailsford: “The rewards from joining the Performance Programmes can be massive”

British Cycling Performance Director, Dave Brailsford, has encouraged athletes with the goal of reaching the highest level in cycling to make themselves known, as applications to the World Class Performance Programmes go live.

British Cycling are currently recruiting athletes from 14 to 22-years-old, across all of the development programmes including Olympic Talent Team and Olympic Development Programme with Brailsford highlighting those who should apply as “anybody serious about performing at the highest level, in this sport.”

For a young athlete, Brailsford acknowledged the challenges faced before reaping the rewards, singling out the period when joining the full-time, residential-based Olympic Academy Programme as a pivotal period of not only physical adaption, but lifestyle progression.

“I think the important thing about the Olympic Academy is learning to be disciplined, organised, sort your life out and understand how to really adapt to a big volume of training” Brailsford summarised.

“That can only happen if you eat well, you’re nourished well, you’re organised and you’re not late for things. We’ve all been there when you’re growing up and it seems like such an easy thing when you’re a bit older, but when you’re younger it can be quite a challenge and I think that’s what the Academy is all about.”

The Programmes, which have been instrumental in the success story of British Cycling, have helped transform athletes to world and Olympic champions, creating a unique atmosphere that extends beyond competition.

“You’re with a bunch of other people of a similar age group, all trying to achieve the same thing and I think there’s a camaraderie that can develop there and there’s a real culture that you can buy into about trying to improve. I would encourage anybody to apply, it’s fun, it’s hard work - it really is hard work - but the rewards can be massive.”

Opportunities to join the British Cycling Performance Programmes for 2012/13 close from September 3. Apply to join here.