Thursday, May 26, 2022
HomeInterviewsMatthias Barnet - British Under 16 Criterium Champion 2014

Matthias Barnet – British Under 16 Criterium Champion 2014


Matthias Barnet
Matthias Barnet. Photo©supplied

Le Tour, The Commonwealth Games, The Tam Gordon interview – there’s just been so much going on at VeloVeritas recently that we must have missed something?

Ah yes, of course, Edinburgh Road Club’s Matthias Barnet winning the British Under 16 Criterium Championship on the technical Hog Hill circuit at Redbridge, London in July, for one thing.

This was the second year in a row that the ‘ERC’ provided the champion in this category, with last year’s winner Ben Forsyth not lining up to defend his title.

‘Back in the day’ you had to qualify to ride the British Schoolboy Champs by gaining a high place in the Scottish Champs but Matthias explained to us that it’s now down to qualifying points to get into the race.

It’s still on restricted gears though, 52 x 16 with 120 prospective young Cavs on the start line hunting that nice red, white and blue British champion’s jersey.

We asked Matthias if there was a plan before the start;

“I was going to sit in for the first two thirds of the race and just watch the good riders.

“I put in an attack at half distance but sat up at the top of the hill after about 200 or 300 metres – then attacked finally with two-and-a-half laps to go.

“Daniel Tulett (Hargroves Cycles) came with me – he’s won the title before and is on the Talent Team – and we worked together but as the finish approached I sat on and then came past him to win.”

Tulett is the current ‘wonder kid’ of British Cycling – granted a place on the British Olympic Development Programme two years earlier than is the norm and billed as the, ‘next Bradley Wiggins.’

Time will tell.

Matthias Barnet
Matthias to the line. Photo©Huw Williams

Matthias’s title win didn’t attract a lot of attention in Scotland but did merit a feature in the Evening News.

When we spoke to Matthias there had been no approach from British Cycling about joining any of their programmes and here in Scotland there’s no official programme for youngsters, to our knowledge.

The story of how got into the bike is a good one.

In 2009 his dad – who’s a tennis coach – took him to a Kraftwerk concert at Manchester Velodrome;

“Kraftwerk were playing in the track centre with a light show as the Olympic team pursuit squad lapped the track on the their low profiles with disc wheels in – it was so cool that I was hooked by it.”

Since then Matthias has built an impressive support network;

“My parents have been hugely supportive and I’ve had good guidance from my club mates, Ken Whitson in particular.

“But as I’ve progressed I’ve received professional coaching from NFTO rider, James McCallum and from Richard Davison who’s a sports scientist and physiologist and used to race himself.”

Back when VeloVeritas rode schoolboy events we cobbled together our re-sprayed Andy McNeil frames with cottered chainsets, steel Campag Gran Sport gears and Mafac brakes.

As a matter of interest I Googled ‘Andy McNeil’ it appears that Andy built a good frame but had a bit of a drink problem in latter years – that explains a lot.

But I digress, Matthias rides a Giant TCR Advanced SL with Dura Ace Di 2 ‘customised’ by Velo Ecosse from 11 down to 10 speed.

Changed days; we were on five speed – I can still remember the joy of going up to a compact six speed freewheel.

Matthias Barnet
Sharing the podium with William Gascoyne and Jamie Ridehalgh. Photo©supplied

Matthias’ performance in the British was only one of a string of good result – he was second in the Scottish Youth Tour prior to the British and rode strongly in the Tour of Donegal.

And his talent isn’t confined to the road; he’s a regular at Meadowbank track and the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome with particular interest in the omnium and pursuit for the future.

But whilst he doesn’t mind riding time trials, he admits he’s no ‘tester.’

The midterm plan is to make the Olympic Development Programme then get on to the British Under 23 squad.

We hope to catch up with Matthias again at the season’s end to hear how he did in forays to Germany, Ireland and the Sainsbury’s School Games in Manchester.

Ed Hood
Ed Hood
Ed's been involved in cycling for over 47 years. In that time he's been a successful time triallist, a team manager, and a 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 for some of the world's top riders. 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

Dan Bigham – Winning the National ’10’ Championship takes his season total to EIGHT!

The last time we spoke to Dan Bigham (Brother NRG Wattshop) there was just a chance that he’d have to line up for the hill climb championship to net a record breaking EIGHTH British title of the year - to go with the kilometre, pursuit, team pursuit, team time trial, CTT 25 mile title, CTT 50 mile title and CTT circuit time trial title. But on the tough Cockermouth 10 mile time trial course, the day was saved when the CTT ‘10’ championship went his way too – so that’s title number eight!

Joe Perrett – British 25 Mile Time Trial Champion 2013

There was a big surprise in that British 25 Mile Championship as IG Sigma Sport’s 22 year-old Joe Perrett relegated Hutchinson (In-Gear Quickvit Trainsharp RT) to third; with Matt Bottrill ( in the silver medal spot.

Ian Field National Champion!

It feels good just writing the words, Ian Field National Champion. I left you at the end of my last blog sat on the sofa watching the Superprestige race in Diegem unable to race due to a back injury.

Cavendish Takes the British Road Championships 2013 Title

Many of you will have been there and will have your own race report inside your head but just to remind you: “Stannard and Fenn go clear on lap one; Millar, Kennaugh, Swift and Cavendish chase and eventually bridge up; those six are the race; Swift and Fenn run out of gas and slide off; Kennaugh gets dropped on the last lap; Cav leaves Stannard and Millar in his jet wash over the last 350 metres in Glasgow Green to be crowned British Champion.” Here’s the VeloVeritas take on our Sunday in the City by the Clyde, or as it goes in The Gaelic, 'The Dear Green Place.'

Joe Skipper – 27mph Average to Win the 12 Hour Championship!

Professional triathlete Joe Skipper, making up for the disappointment of ‘turning short’ and being technically "DNF" in last year’s CTT 12 hour championship has recorded the first 27 mph 12 hour time trial - 325.5 miles in the CC Breckland event in Norfolk. Here’s what Joe had to say just two days after his historic ride.

George Atkins – Time Trials, Belgium and Cooking!

George Atkins was a name that suddenly appeared on the Scottish scene back in the summer. And on Sunday the versatile man from Leicester took silver in the British U23 Time Trial Championships, but before his foray into the world of riding 'alone and unpaced', he spent six weeks in Flanders, so naturally we needed to have a word with him, not long before the British Champs.

At Random

The Dotty Jumper

The Dotty Jumper. Or the polka dot (climbers) jersey, or the king of the mountains. This is the jersey that is currently the least predictable of those up for grabs in the Tour, and also currently the least closely followed (this is perhaps untrue in non-Anglophone countries, but comparing the amount of coverage that Cav gets in his green jersey battles, as opposed to Anthony Charteau in his dotty battles, I don't think so).

Thomas De Gendt – Grateful to Mother Nature

Who were the men of the Giro? There was Ryder, certainly – and Rodriguez; but there was also Guardini’s confirmation; Ferrari’s transformation from from villain to hero; Cav and Taylor Phinney’s displays of grinta; Marco Pinotti’s class in winning the last time trial and Basso’s heroic but ultimately doomed bid for the podium. But perhaps the man of the race was Belgium’s Thomas De Gendt, who threatened to turn the Hesjedal/Rodriguez battle into a sideshow...

Ethan Vernon – Part of the Welsh Team Pursuit Squad “hoping to go sub-four”

There’s a new kid on the Team Pursuit block, 17 year-old winner of three national championships in 2017, author of a 1:02 kilometre and in the Welsh team which twice recorded 4:01 rides in the recent Commonwealth Games, Mr. Ethan Vernon - another man to benefit from riding with Dan Bigham’s KGF track squadra. Here’s what he had to say to us just the other day...

Roy Schuiten Revisited – ace pursuiter of the ’70’s

We recently ran or tribute to the late, great 'Big Bert' Oosterbosch. It was so well received by our readers that we thought we should re-run a piece from a few years ago which pays tribute to another Dutch chrono and pursuit king - the late, great Roy Schuiten.

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 3: Verviers – Longwy, 212.5km. Peter Sagan is just too strong

Peter Sagan’s quote of the day? “What is pressure?” As team mate Marcus Burghardt said; “he was such power in his head and that’s what makes the difference.” Despite pulling his foot in the sprint at the top of that nasty finish climb he was just too quick for everyone...

Scott Thwaites – “My 2014 goal is that elusive first Pro win”

The last time we spoke to NetApp-Endura’s Scott Thwaites was in the spring of 2013, just after he’d finished in fifth place in the Handzame Classic and seventh spot in le Samyn – both hard races in brutal conditions. For 2014 he’s already back in the groove again with a podium place on stage one of the Three Days of West Flanders.