Talented young BMX riders Dan McBride and Curtis Manaton, currently on the Olympic Academy Programme, will be spending some time at British Cycling sponsors Fiat Group Automobile’s Manchester dealership, getting valuable work experience.
Gaining work experience for personal development can be a challenging task, particularly for full time athletes who already have a busy training schedule.
British Cycling’s Olympic BMX Coach, Grant White, said: “It’s a great opportunity that these young guys can go out and get experience in a working environment. Not only will it give them valuable options for later on in their lives they can also apply the lessons they learn in their athletic careers.
“Simple things such as time-keeping and organisation are vital skills whether you work in an office environment or ride your bike for a living.”
This is part of a wider project led by Jo Harrison – Performance Lifestyle Advisor, around creating personal development opportunities for Academy riders on the British Cycling Academy Programme.
Harrison explains: “For our BMX Academy riders to be the very best they can be, we have to look at how they develop as people off the bike too.
“The project allows Dan and Curtis to develop important personal skills such as communication, responsibility and confidence as well as offering an opportunity to constructively use some down time and gain an insight in to normal working life outside the relatively protected environment on World Class programme.
"For our BMX Academy riders to be the very best they can be, we have to look at how they develop as people off the bike too."
Performance Lifestyle Advisor Jo Harrison
“This experience has been created to have a positive effect on the riders and subsequently their performances on the bike.”
This project is aimed at broadening the athlete life experiences and personal development opportunities. By doing something constructive alongside training and racing, offers the potential for riders to re-focus and recharge the batteries which can have a positive effect on their performance.
Dan and Curtis will work as mechanics at the Bauer Millett car dealership in Manchester. They will be spending half a day a week working at the dealership, where they will not only gain hands on experience with fully trained staff but have the opportunity to explore a potential career avenue for them in the future.
Dan McBride said: “It will be very different from riding my BMX every day but it I think I will really enjoy the experience. Life as a full time athlete, particularly in a high risk sport like BMX, can be an unpredictable one and it is important to explore as many options as possible.”
Curtis added: “An experience like this can only improve my bike-riding. It is important to have a good balance of different activities in your life. The confidence I can take from learning and developing new skills will hopefully transfer to my training and competing.”
Mitch Millett, Managing Director at Bauer Millett: “We were delighted to invite Dan McBride and Curtis Manaton on this work experience opportunity.
“They threw themselves into everything that was asked of them in the first week and showed the same commitment and work ethic that has made them such promising young athletes. I hope they will really enjoy their experience with us and we will enjoy having them.
“This is a great example of how the partnership that we have with British Cycling extends beyond supplying vehicles for British Cycling, we also want to make sure we are supporting the team and providing opportunities where we can”