Monday, September 20, 2021
HomeInterviewsEvan Oliphant - Scottish Road Champion 2014

Evan Oliphant – Scottish Road Champion 2014

-

The Giro was a wonderful race, no question; but whilst it’s charging across Italy everything else gets ignored – like the Scottish Road Race Championship, for example. The winner was – unsurprisingly – Raleigh’s Evan Oliphant.

VeloVeritas caught up with the man from Wick a few days after the race…

Evan Oliphant
Evan Oliphant. Photo©Team Raleigh/Larry HIckmott (Velo UK)

Congratulations, Evan – how many times have you won it, now?

“That was number six, if I get to the Commonwealth Games it’ll be my third time and of course it’s nice to go as Scottish Champion – which I have been on the last two occasions as well.”

Can you remember the first time you won?

“I was second to Jason Macintyre in 2004 and then in 2005 it was my turn to win – Jason and I took turns at winning it…

“This year was perhaps the hardest to win because I had to go with everything. If there was a group up the road, everyone just sat and looked at me.

“It can become a bit annoying but it got better as the race went on as the rest began to tire – with the programme I ride my endurance is good.

“Although I was a little tired after having ridden the Lincoln and two Tour Series rounds in the week before.”

Does the win mean much to Raleigh.

“They’re happy that I won but they wouldn’t be concerned if I didn’t ride it.

“Riding it meant that I missed the Aberstwyth Tour Series round – but I have Durham and Edinburgh coming up.”

Evan Oliphant
Evan in action in round two of the Tour Series in Edinburgh. Photo©Martin Williamson

What did you think of the course?

“I’d hoped to get up to Alford early enough to go round it in the car but didn’t manage so I wasn’t sure about the “big climb” everyone was talking about.

“We went up a climb but it wasn’t too tough and I thought; “is that it?”

“But the final climb is actually a hard one – I was down to 39 x 26 for it.

“James McCallum, Peter Murdoch and a Rigmar guy [Steven Lawley, ed.] were away going into it and I went across to them on my own – then attacked on the steep bit of the hill.

“The three of them were chasing me for the last five miles off the climb – and it was in to a head wind so I couldn’t relax.”

How has this season been for you?

“I won the second stage of the Tour of the Reservoir with the same move as I made to win last year.

“And I’ve been top ten in all of the other Premiers – I think I’m sixth overall.”

Evan Oliphant
Evan has a few more criteriums to do soon, then the British Champs, the Commonwealth Games and hopefully his team will get a start in the Tour of Britain. Photo©Martin Williamson

How many pro seasons is that now?

“I started with Recycling in 2004 so I guess that’s 10 seasons.

“It’s changed so much, the level is way higher.

“Back then there were only about five guys who you knew could win but now there are about 40.

“There are four Continental teams and a lot of full time guys, at least 40 – back then, us at Recycling were the only full timers.

“There’s a lot more money about now with the races being televised – but the only thing now is that if a break goes with one rider from each of those four Conti teams then that’s it.”

Evan Oliphant
Ten seasons a pro, and Evan is still going strong and going to the Commonwealth Games. Photo©Martin Williamson

How does a good level Scottish race compare to a Premier?

“It’s faster in England but actually easier for me because I’m not out in the wind all the time.

“In a Premier though I’ll have to go to 700 or 800 watts for 30 seconds on a number of occasions.

“If I do that in Scotland then I’m well away.”

How’s the Tour Series going for Raleigh?

“Not as well as we’d like – Ian Wilkinson has been ill and Alex Blane crashed in the Lincoln.

“I’m looking forward to the Durham and Edinburgh rounds – they suit me because they have a hill on the circuit.”

Evan Oliphant
Evan and his teammates on the Tour Series podium in Edinburgh. Photo©Martin Williamson

What are you riding at the Games?

“It’s not confirmed that I’m going, yet – the team isn’t nominated until May 29th. [Evan is indeed named in the Scottish squad. ed.]

“But if I am selected I’ll be riding road and track.”

Assuming you are selected what would your preparation look like?

“After the British Elite Road champs there’s a training camp in The Netherlands for final preparation where I’d do a lot of track work.

“I rode the track a lot over the winter and am sprinting better than ever – I’d hope to ride the points and scratch.

“On the road I’d be in a supporting role for Andy Fenn and David Millar.”

Evan Oliphant
Evan will be riding for Andy Fenn (Omega-Pharma Quick-Step) and David Millar (Garmin) in the Scottish team at the Commonwealth Games. Photo©Martin Williamson

What’s still ‘to do’ for you?

“I’d really like to get a medal in the British Elite Road Races champs but it’s very hard when you’re up against Sky.”

Who’s going to win the Giro?

“I haven’t watched that much with all the travelling and racing I’ve been doing but Cadel, I think.”

Ed Hood
Ed's been involved in cycling for over 45 years. In that time he's been a successful time triallist, team manager, and sponsor of several teams and clubs. He's also a respected and successful coach, and during the winter months can often be found working in the cabins at the Six Days. Ed remains a massive fan of the sport and couples his extensive contacts with an inexhaustable enthusiasm for the minutiae and the history of our sport.

Related Articles

Stuart Balfour – Dave Rayner Fund ‘Rider of the Year’

Stuart Balfour’s win in the supporting u23 race to the GP Ouest France Plouay, one of the most prestigious amateur in France, was special. The Dave Rayner Fund thought so too and made him their ‘Rider of the Year.’ As well as his Plouay success he won in Montpichon and at the Ronde Briochine; he was top 20 in the tough Kreiz Breizh UCI stage race and top 10 in the Tour de la Manche.

Katie Archibald – Scotland’s Newest World Champion!

It’s not along since we interviewed Katie Archibald – as a member of the GB team which took the world record for the ladies four kilometre team pursuit at the World Cup in Mexico at the end of last year. We make no apology for speaking to her again – but this time we speak to her as world champion in the discipline.

Sandy Gordon – Part Two: Shipyards and Scottish Championships

In Part One of our interview with Sandy Gordon, we heard about his horror crash at the 1966 Tour of Austria and missing the Jamaica Commonwealth Games, helping Brian Temple secure a silver medal at the 1970 Commonwealth Games and racing in the Tours of Scotland, Czechoslovakia - and getting banned for racing in South Africa at the Rapport Toer. We continue the chat by finding out more about Sandy's other overseas races and his many domestic successes...

Jamie McGahan – Scottish Winner of National Tours, definitely was ‘Good Enough’!

The Rás. A race to strike fear in the strongest heart; huge fields, big hills and mad uncontrollable stages with fearless Irishmen continually firing off the front in death or glory bids. High times VeloVeritas 'had a word' with Mr.McGahan..

Stuart Balfour – World Road Championships Breakaway Driver

Perhaps it was the ‘Scottish’ weather at Harrogate which made the Scots perform so well at the recent World Road Championships? Stuart Balfour spent much of his u23 Championship ‘up the road’ to help set up GB team leader, Tom Pidcock for his eventual bronze medal; Balfour finished in 39th spot.

George Edwards – The Scot who was BLRC British Champion in 1946

George Edwards? The name might not mean much to you but along with Brian Smith, Robert Millar and David Miller he’s one of few Scotsmen who have won the British National Road Race Championship – in his case the BLRC version in 1946. George passed away in 1992 at the age of 68 but Harry Tweed connected us with George’s son who shares the same Christian name and now lives in the Netherlands. Here’s what George had to say to VeloVeritas, recently.

At Random

James McCallum – “This year is about development and mentoring”

As James McCallum (Rapha Condor Sharp) prepared for the recent Tour of Normandy (won by Europcar’s Jerome Cousin) he took time to talk to VeloVeritas about his hopes for the 2012 season - his sixth as a professional.

Grenoble Six Day 2010, Night Six – Franco Marvulli Again!

The crowd is good, the riders' contracts have been paid, there's one more procession, one last picture of the Folies girls, I've polished the bikes of Jens and Franco Marvulli, most of the stuff is out of the big cabin, the strongmen are going through their routine and there's a buzz in the air.

John Archibald – CTT 25 Mile Champion with a 48:13

That man John Archibald is back in action again – and with a 48 minutes and 13 seconds ‘BANG !’ down on the Westferry course in the CTT ‘25’ Champs on Sunday past. It gave us a good excuse to catch up with the Commonwealth Games individual pursuit silver medallist and see what he’s been up to since The Gold Coast and what’s next on the agenda for him?

Craig Maclean – Totally Focused on Beijing

It would have been his 13th Worlds; but for the first time since 1996 there will be no one from Granton-on-Spey on the British track team, when the series kick off in Manchester in a week-or-so. VeloVeritas caught up with Craig Maclean on the day 'The Guardian' told us that he won't be pulling on a GB 'speed suit' for the team or individual sprints.

Russell Downing – Relishing the Ronde

Having had Michael Mørkøv’s take on de Ronde, we thought we’d chat to a man a bit closer to home about his experiences in what is at least in the top three of the world’s single day races – along with Milan-Sanremo and Paris-Roubaix. The Tour of Flanders was one of the few races left on Russell Downing’s ‘to do’ list – but now he can wear the T-shirt.

Bert Roesems – Wants a Win!

It's the 2007 Three Days of De Panne, stage one, hilly, windy and there are men dying out there. But at the front a powerful figure attacks constantly into the wind which scythes in off the North Sea-and he doesn't quit his huge 'digs' until the race defining break has formed around him.