David Lines
David Lines.

VeloVeritas has just about caught up with merry-go-round of new teams and transfers for 2014 – and one of the rotations we noticed is that former Scottish Criterium Champion, Davie Lines moves from the baby blue of MG Maxifuel Pro Cycling to the more aggressive red and black of Starley Primal Pro Cycling.

Here’s what he had to say to VeloVeritas just the other day:

You’re still a fireman, Davie – isn’t it hard to fit in the training?

“Yes, I think I’ll be there ‘til they knock the building down! I work shifts and fit my training around that, for example if I’m day shift I’ll cycle to and from work that’s Falkirk to Edinburgh, 27 miles each way.

“If I’m on night I’ll do three or four hours before work. Doing the training isn’t the problem – it’s the recovery which is more difficult.”

What happened to MG Maxifuel?

“There were two DS with the team, Rod Freeman and Jamie Scott who decided to go their own ways at the end of last season.

“Rod has taken riders with him riders from MG and merged with the Spin Rotor-Primal-C-Originals team from last year to form Starley Primal.

“Starley are frames – they’ll do a full custom spray job/component choice for you – and Primal is a clothing company. They’re already big in the off road world – supplying Rab Wardell’s Orange Monkey team with their clothing for example – but want to break into the road market.

“The Starley frames are designed in the UK, manufactured abroad but painted and assembled here – they’re nice machines.

“We had the team launch recently at the London Bike Show and they were on display there.

“We’re on Ultegra 11 speed with Rotor cranks; I’ve been using the Q rings which are oval but not the extreme oval ones – those are the QXL – and they certainly feel smoother. You can vary the location of the ring on the crank spider to give the best set up for time trialling or for acceleration. Wiggins and the rest aren’t riding them to be at a disadvantage, are they?”

How as 2013 for you with MG?

“Really good, we had Magnus Backstedt with us which was great for PR – everyone wanted to speak to him.

“It was a good programme and they flew me down south for the Tour Series races which was great, it saved all that driving which is a killer.”

David Lines
Davie was happy with his team setup at last year’s Scottish Road Champs. Photo©Martin Williamson

What was your best result for 2013?

“I was top six in the Milk Race criterium in Nottingham behind Felix English (Rapha Condor) and Alex Blain (Raleigh) that was a big race and nice result.

“I was pretty consistent in the Tour Series crits then had a bit of a lull through illness; but came back to ride well in the cyclocrosses; I won four and made the top 15 in the British Championship.

“The British carries UCI points which means I can ride the Milton Keynes World Cup race, later this year.”

What did you think of the British Road Race Champs in Glasgow?

“Awesome, with the crowds, the closed roads and the urban course – but very treacherous in the rain with all the diesel on the roads.

“It was like a huge crit where you were constantly accelerating out of corners – and it certainly wasn’t a course where you could hide.”

What’s the plan for 2014?

“I’m a criterium rider so the Tour Series and Elite Criterium Series are priority and I’ll ride the Premiers in a team role – but I do want to do well in the Rutland.

“That’s a terrific race; I had two punctures at bad places on off road sections last year but I’d really like to get a result this year.”

David Lines
The Starley Primal team for 2014.

How’s the Scottish Calendar looking?

“As normal, the same old, same old; it’s very hard to find enough races if you’re an elite category rider – it means a lot of travel down south to race.”

Have you been riding the track much?

“Not as much as I’d like – I went down for the British Championships but that was a bit of a nightmare. I’ve been winning at the Glasgow Track League but I’d like to be part of the Scottish Cycling training sessions.

“I rode the track at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi, points and scratch and did a job for Evan Oliphant.

“The thing about training for the track is that you have to spend time training specifically for it – before Delhi we were doing five hours each day on the track in Holland and it’s amazing how your speed comes on with work like that.”

You’re obviously looking to get selected again – road or track?

“I’d prefer the track but would love to go for both. The road selection criteria is pretty tough, though; top five in a British national event – the top 40 guys in the UK are all full time and away riding things like the Tour of the Med as we speak.

“For the track you have to be top five in a British national event or get UCI points. The new timed criteria is that you have to do a sub 1.7 kilometre, roll round for eight laps, do 500 metres inside 31 seconds, another eight laps respite then another kilometre inside 1.7.

“I’m going to email Scottish Cycling and see if I can get a chance to join the programme; I’ve applied every year and have been refused – but that just makes you try all the harder.”

David Lines
Davie enjoys mixing his racing, Road, Track, ‘Cross, and TT. Photo©Martin Williamson

2014 is about…?

“Going to the Games would be awesome – and I want to focus on the Tour Crit Series. It’s the backbone of the UK scene with all the TV coverage it gets.

“I’ll play my team role in the Premiers, even though they don’t really suit me and I’d like a good result in the Rutland and Scottish Road Race Championship.

“And I’d like to ride that cyclocross World Cup in Milton Keynes.

“I was training in Lanzarote two weeks ago and have another camp in March but I guess I can’t have too many more years like this with all the racing and travelling.

“I’m 36 so it’s coming to a stage where I’ll have to calm down!”