British Cycling's Olympic Academy Programme - BMX is now recruiting for a new intake of under-23 riders to make their next step towards a BMX career.
A place on the Academy Programme is something only those riders with the ability to make significant progress towards a two-three year goal of a medal at under-23 and senior European or World Championships will achieve. Competition for places is always high with a very limited number of places reflecting the limited number of Olympic medals available at the top of the sport, so only riders demonstrating truly exceptional ability will earn membership. You will have to be able to demonstrate results at National Series / National Championships level as a minimum, with international results at Europeans & World Championships carrying a greater weighting.
The Academy programme is full time, requiring a strong work ethic to survive and progress. Young riders need to live and breathe cycling and devote their coming years to the achievement of challenging goals. The support provided and commitment of the Olympic Programme staff to assisting riders to achieve these goals is as high as the commitment expected from the riders.
The programme is based in Manchester throughout the year, alongside riders from the Track Sprint, Men's endurance and mountain bike academies, giving access to a range of training partners. The Academy riders will share the gym and centre with riders from the Track Sprint and BMX Podium programmes as well as the Track Endurance programmes. Although some training sessions are Academy specific, there will be opportunities to train with sparring and training partners from other nations and across all levels of the programme.
No stone is left unturned to provide the best coaching, sports science input, equipment appropriate to the stage of development, nutrition support, medical and hygiene advice, educational support, clothing, injury prevention and rehabilitation, tactical advice, race support, track time, coaching, training programme, mental preparation. This list continues to grow in the team's unending quest for excellence. Academy riders are provided via UK Sport lottery funding with a small grant, from which they are required to make a contribution towards programme and accommodation costs. There is a regular education programme throughout the winter months aimed at providing riders with the life skills needed to make a successful transition post academy into a professional full time career as a cyclist. This programme can include language skills, nutrition, budgeting, as well as time management and media training.
British Cycling's Olympic Academy Programme was introduced in 2004; that included Tour de France stage winner Mark Cavendish, and Olympic Champions Geraint Thomas and Ed Clancy. Since that time, the Academy has grown exponentially to incorporate all Olympic disciplines, with most riders residential in apartment style accommodation in Manchester over the winter months. This year, two of the existing BMX Academy riders earned the right to a reserve accreditation for the Olympic Games and were able to shadow Liam Phillips and Shanaze Reade through their build up to competition.
Learning from the successes of the Men's Endurance Academy, parallel programmes were developed for Track Sprint, Mountain Bike Cross Country, BMX Supercross and Women's Endurance. This is far from a one size fits all model though; in recognition of the specific needs of the different cycling disciplines; each Programme differs slightly.
A taste of life on the Programme
Application forms can be downloaded here: Download
British Cycling Equality Monitoring Form - Download
Application deadline dates: 1st October 2012
Successful applicants will be advised by the middle of October with a start date in the Academy of November 1.
Contact: Academy@britishcycling.org.uk. All applications should be submitted via e-mail only.