A young man we’ve been meaning to speak to for a while ‘but never got round to it’ is Aberdonian, Daniel Kain. He can do it all – time test, ride the boards, circuit and road race.
First off we thought we’d have a word with his granddad and mentor, Norman Skene who’s been around the Scottish scene as long as me – and that’s a long time.
Along the way, Norman picked up the Scottish 12 Hour Time Trial title, so the man knows all about jousting with a stopwatch.
Here’s what Norman had to say to VeloVeritas recently about young Daniel:
“Daniel showed an interest in cycling when he was about 9 or 10 years-old when he joined Grampian Tigers.
“His first real competitive team was Ythan CC where he had the opportunity to try all disciplines, including track, road, TT’s and ‘cross.
“Daniel didn’t seem to have a preference until he was 13 when he decided he really enjoyed track and road racing the most.
“I was coaching Daniel myself at the time and soon realised that he was showing a lot of promise and maybe had something a bit special, so we all started to take his cycling a lot more seriously.
“Daniel has enjoyed a fair bit of success during his time in youth racing and I think he would say he is most proud to have won the silver medal in the British Individual Pursuit Championship and to have won the last British Cycling National Series race of this season at Brands Hatch.
“Daniel is just about to join the junior ranks and is delighted to have been selected to ride for Craig Grieve’s Spokes Racing Team with a view to riding a programme which will take him all over the UK and on the continent.
“Daniel is also riding for the Scottish Cycling performance squad and hopes to ride in the British Track Championships in August.
“As a family we are committed to supporting Daniel’s cycling and are all excited to see where it’s going to take him in the future.“
And the man himself had this to say to us…
The basics first please, Daniel – where are you from, how old are you, tell us about your school?
“I’m from Aberdeen, I’ll be 17 in January and I’m in fifth year at Harlaw Academy in the city.”
Your personal bests are: 20.53 and 54.13, have I got your times right?
“The 20.53 is my 10 mile time trial Scottish Youth A record, which I got at Freuchie at a midweek TT.
“Yes, the 54.13 is my personal best for a 25 mile TT.”
And you’re a fixed man, what ratio?
“For the last three years I’ve been riding time trials on a fixed wheel with an 88 inch gear.”
How did you get into cycling?
“I started cycling because of my Grandad Norman; he took me out to a local coffee shop and I remember him having to give me a push to get there.
“I was going out regularly with him but he often complained that I was slowing down his training rides.”
Tell us about your best achievements on the track please.
“I’ve won six Scottish track championships in the last three years.
“I’ve won two British medals; the first was at the British Omnium Champs at Herne Hill where I won bronze. The second was this summer at the British track champs in the 2k Individual Pursuit (I won silver with a new Scottish record of 2:15:59).”
Tell us about your best achievements on the road.
“My second big race was in 2017 at the British Criterium Championships, part of the British series. It was all quite new to me and I came 12th, which I was happy with.
“Two years on and this year I’ve been in the top 10 in all of the British Series races – and I won the last one at Brands Hatch.
“We’ve clocked up a lot of driving miles, travelling all over the country most weekends.
“My favourite road result has to be winning Stage One at the Youth Tour of Scotland, this year.”
Which is your favourite discipline and why?
“I really enjoy it all – riding the road, track and TT’s… I’m not sure I could choose a favourite right now.”
How do you fit training in?
“I’m still at school full time so it’s got to be training in the evenings.
“Which is harder in the winter with not being able to get out on the road as much.”
Do you have a coach and what’s the methodology?
“For the past year, and the coming year my coach is PJ Barron at Scottish Cycling.
“We work together closely setting targets and coming up with a training plan for events.”
Tell us about Squadra Scozzese.
“Unfortunately the team I was riding for folded and a few of the boys and myself got together and decided to start our own club to suit our own needs.
“There was me, Oscar Onley, Aaron King and Callum Reid.
“With the support of our families we set up the club choosing the name and designing the kit ourselves. It wasn’t to everyone’s taste but it made us stand out in those big bunch races!
Have Scottish Cycling taken notice of your performance?
“Yes I’ve been well supported by Scottish Cycling and I’m now on the Scottish Development Squad.
“We’ve had a training week in Skye and a few other training days already over the winter.”
Which of your rides are you most proud of?
“I think I’m most proud of that silver medal in the British Pursuit Championships.
“I worked really hard to improve my times and gave it everything on the day and got a great result.”
What are your goals for 2020?
“Next year will be a big learning year for me; a whole new race calendar as a junior, travelling to Belgium and France, hopefully.
“I’d like to think I could get some good results at home and abroad with both Spokes Racing Team and the Scottish Cycling national squad.”
And your long term goals?
“Long term I’d be looking to get onto an U23 development team and to be recognised by BC for my track performances.”
If you could win just one race?
“I’d really like to win British road champs or individual pursuit as a junior.”
He’s only going to go faster next year – keep your eyes on those results pages.