Sunday, July 25, 2021
HomeInterviewsDan Bigham - Winning the National '10' Championship takes his season total...

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!

We made Daryl Webster’s 1985 season the previous best record with seven titles: the ’25,’ the ’50,’ hill climb, pursuit, team pursuit plus the BCF and RTTC (as were) TTT titles.

We had a chat with Dan a day or two after his historic win to talk big chain rings, watts and ‘white lining’…

Dan Bigham
With the ’10’ win, Dan brings his season total of British Championships to eight. Photo©HarryTweed/All Bike Scotland

No hill climb champs then, Dan?

“Definitely not!”

Have you changed your position a wee bit since the ‘25’?

“No, I actually want to raise the front end a little but I need to get the correct spacers.

“Historically it was ‘long and low’ to be aero but that’s not necessarily the case when you go into the wind tunnel; raising the front end could actually work out more efficient.”

Any changes to the hardware?

“It’s the same bike as I rode in the ‘25’ but I have put a larger chainring on – a carbon 62 tooth one.

“The carbon ring runs very smoothly, you don’t feel any vibrations coming up through the pedals and because the chain is describing ‘softer’ curves, along with the oversize derailleur rollers it should be more efficient.”

Who were ‘the men to beat’ before the start?

“Ryan Perry (Raleigh) who came second and I also thought it would be a course and a day for John Archibald; hilly and hard – a day for a Scotsman!

“But it turned out he wasn’t on his best day.

“Because Perry was off before me I was able to get a time check on him out of the turn and when I saw I was only seven or eight seconds up on him I knew I had to step on it on the way back.”

Originally the race was to be on the superfast Levens course?

“I don’t know the reason why they moved it to a tougher course, maybe everyone is bored with the drag strips – it made a good change, something more challenging.”

Did you go up early to ‘try the course out’?

“Yes, a friend of a friend has a triathlon training base up there and we stayed there – it was awesome just minutes from the course and we were able to give it a good recce.

“We also took the opportunity to watch the early starters and see how they were handling it.”

Your winning 19:01 isn’t exactly slow but a lot less quick than we’re used to talking about…

“That’s a sign of the course; when you throw in some hills and wind and there’s no dual carriageway the times are going to go back.”

Dan Bigham
Dan gets that 62t chainring around. Photo©HarryTweed/All Bike Scotland

Are we allowed to ask about watts?

“Sure – I averaged 374 with 365 on the way out and 390 on the way back.

“I went out on the careful side with the cross/tailwind because I knew there was that two-and-a-half minute climb out of the turn on the way back; it was always the plan to give more on the way back – I guess seeing the gap to Perry helped stimulate me.

“On a course like that it’s much more difficult to gauge your effort; you can’t just ride to a set number of watts because of the hills and wind.”

And John Archibald is joining your squad?

“Yeah, it’s an exciting prospect for our team.

“We chatted after the ‘25’ champs and it makes sense, a good fit with his time trial abilities but also his track work and the fact that he rides the Premier Calendar races too.”

How’s the track trade team coming along?

“Team KGF – we have it all pretty much in place, the kit is all here, the Walker Brothers up in the North east are working with us on the equipment.

“The training is going well; we’ve been doing a lot of gym work which has really helped with my standing starts – my lap one is much improved.

“We’ll have it all together for the track meeting in Glasgow at the end of September.

“We haven’t quite got the website up and running yet but we’re working on it as we speak.”

Dan Bingham
Dan reckons the optimal aero position isn’t necessarily “long and low”. Photo©HarryTweed/All Bike Scotland

How does GB selection work for you, not being part of the British Cycling ‘system’ – have they released selection criteria yet?

“There have been a lot of changes at BC; their funding has been cut so they can’t be seen to be letting people go whilst taking on others.

“The criteria aren’t really definitive – there are four; international results, but no times are mentioned because it’s down to the level of competition and venue; how you perform in training; your attitude and ‘any other aspects’ the selectors might take into consideration.”

Bialoblocki’s short ’43’ for a ‘25’– even though it was disallowed does it give you food for thought about what’s possible?

“I’m outspoken on this one – I don’t think people realise how much of an advantage it gives riding the white line like that.

“And it doesn’t have to be a continuous stream of vehicles, a lorry passing can give you a surge of 20/30/40 watts.

“If you run the numbers it can give you a 10/15/20 seconds advantage over a 10 mile time trial.

“But I’ve also run the numbers for me to do that ride and I have to find an awful lot of watts to match it!”

But that’s an end to drag strips, 4:00 am alarms and  ‘clock bashing’ for Dan until 2018; it’s all about the track now – you can see Dan and his new track trade team in action in Glasgow on September 30th.

See you there?

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

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 – National Criterium Series 2013 Winner

As well as Raleigh’s Evan Oliphant’s recent overall win in the Premier Calendar another national competition was claimed by a rider who has close links to Scotland – 100% ME’s George Atkins regards Edinburgh as his second home and spent time in the capital after he left the BC ‘Plan’ a year or two ago.

Ian Stannard – New British Road Champion 2012

Winning the British elite road race title? Simple; go in the early break with a team-mate, drive to get a decent gap, ride tempo and when the opposition start to bring you back, step on the gas, crack them, then drop your breakaway companions to win in solitary splendour. That’s if your name is Ian Stannard ...

Dan Bigham – the new mens’ 25 Mile Time Trial Champion for 2017

We’re proud of our record here at VeloVeritas; we’ve interviewed every British 25 mile time trial champion since 2005. Michael Hutchinson, Jason MacIntyre (rest in peace), Joe Perrett, Matt Bottrrill, Ryan Perry - and this year is no exception with Dan Bigham (Brother NRG Wattshop) taking time to chat to us about his seventh British title of the year [adding to CTT ‘50,’ CTT Circuit TT, TTT, kilometre, individual pursuit and team pursuit] and his ambitions for the future.

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 (www.drag2zero.com) in the silver medal spot.

James McCallum – British Criterium National Champion

"I knew that if I was second or third round the last corner then nobody would beat me." And so it proved, as James McCallum added British Criterium Championship gold to Commonwealth Games points bronze, last night in Otley. VeloVeritas spoke to James just hours after his win.

At Random

Jonathan Tiernan-Locke – “Ifs and Buts Don’t Win Races”

It's no surprise that Endura Racing's 'man of the year' Jonathan Tiernan-Locke has today signed for Team Sky. Anyone who thought that Englishman’s top six GC placing and King of the Mountains win back in the 2011 Tour of Britain was a freak result had their eyes opened this spring when the 27 year-old from Plymouth won the first stage, fourth stage and GC in this season’s Tour of the Mediterranean – a race dating back to 1974 and which boasts Eddy Merckx as one of its winners.

T’was the Day Before the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad 2012…

We're at the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad 2012... we left the Vivaldi at 02:15 on Thursday morning - we must be getting old. Gent is changing, they've pulled down most of the station and there are cranes everywhere as the old girl's face gets lifted.

Arthur Doyle – Scottish Hill Climb Champion 2013

The day of the Scottish Hill Climb Championship wasn’t one for post race interviews – everyone just wanted to jump in their car and get home to the warm and dry. But VeloVeritas thought we best hear what the new champion had to say – we caught up with Dooley’s Arthur Doyle the week after his win.

Entrepreneurs on the Saddle – an extract from “The Cycling Professor”

"Entrepreneurs on the Saddle" is the first of several excerpts from my book "The Cycling Professor", to give you a flavour of the topics I discuss in it. Thanks to the guys at VeloVeritas for the opportunity to do this.

Michele Scarponi

Michele Scarponi took fourth on GC at the Tour of the Alps this week and it was a shock to all when word came of his being fatally struck by an Iveco van on an early morning training ride just one kilometre from his home in Filottrano. To Michele Scarponi’s wife, Anna and twin boys Giacomo and Tomamaso, his extended family, friends, fans and team mates we extend our deepest sympathies. Rest in peace, Michele we’re going to miss you.

Liam Beaty – Scottish 10 Mile Time Trial Champion 2018

VeloVeritas didn’t make it up to the Scottish 10 Mile Time Trial Championship at Alness. ‘No problem,’ thinks me, ‘I’ll get an interview with the winner; if John Archibald hasn’t recovered from his crash and doesn’t ride it’ll be David Griffiths or maybe Chris Smart?’ Not for the first time, I got it wrong. Liam Beaty? Is that the Hawick lad whom was second on the hill climb, last year?