Sunday, December 5, 2021
HomeInterviewsAndrea Pogson - British 100 Mile TT Champion in 1998

Andrea Pogson – British 100 Mile TT Champion in 1998


When Jo Patterson won the CTT 100 mile title earlier this year we began to do some homework.

Had another Scottish based woman [‘girl,’- ‘lady’ and ‘lass’ are apparently all frowned upon in certain circles] ever won the British 100 mile time trial title championship before?

The answer was, ‘yes,’ in 1998, Andrea Pogson riding for Midlothian Racing Team did that very thing.

Andrea very kindly consented to delve back into her memory banks and give us her recollections of a highly successful time trialling career. 

Andrea Pogson
Andrea Pogson in her ‘comeback’ year in 2014, riding the Gordon Arms Time Trial in the Scottish Borders. Photo©Martin Williamson

You started on the bike to help stop smoking?

“Yes, that’s true, I was smoking 25 cigarettes each day and couldn’t run 50 yards without getting breathless.”

I believe that your first ventures on the bike were with Eastbourne CTC – how did you get into racing?

“I’d meet them at Hailsham, which is north of Eastbourne and go out on the runs; my goal was to be able to do 20 miles each night and get fit.

“A lot of the CTC members were in the Eastbourne Rovers Cycling Club and so thought I’d try racing.

“My first race a 10 mile time trial and I did a 27:16, which folks said was a good time – a woman came up to me and said; ‘it would be better if you didn’t freewheel down the hills,’ I asked if it was against the rules and she replied; ‘no, but you’d go faster!’”

Galashiels is a long way from Eastbourne…

“My father moved north to the Scottish Borders in 1988 and decided to come up too, joining the Gala CC.”

Season ’97 was a big year for you, with the Gala CC: the SCU ‘25’ Champs, the’50’ Champs and record, and the ’100’ record. Your recollections of that year?

“I remember I had an accident in the April that year and broke two fingers but I’d done a lot of miles, riding Audax events [Audax UK is the world’s largest long-distance cycling club, ed.] including Paris-Brest-Paris which is 1,200 kilometres.

“I did a sub hour ride on the Loch Lomond course and everything just followed on from that, I just went from strength to strength.

Andrea Pogson
Andrea Pogson was British 100 Mile TT Champion in 1998. Photo©Martin Williamson

Season ‘98 and Midlothian RT, why move?

“There were promises of sponsorship and building a women’s team but they never really amounted to anything.”

Another great season in ‘98: the SCU ‘25’ Champs and record with a 55 minute ride, the ’50’ Champs and record, and the ’100’ record – tell us about that year.

“I didn’t have a coach and the success I enjoyed was just down to persistence, lots of miles on the bike, I’d get up at 05:00 am and do 40 miles before work, I was doing 200 to 300 miles each week and it really ate into my family life.” 

And the RTTC ‘100’ Championship win, your memories of that day?

“It was over two laps of a ‘50’ course, which I’d ridden before so that was helpful.

“I did expect to win a medal, bronze was what my sights were set on; Katie Allen was the favourite, she’d won the 50 Championship but I felt good that day, relaxed, everything just felt right.

“I’m quite good at assessing my ride against others and at the last roundabout I could see I was up on Katie and when I saw the look on her face I knew I could win, she was suffering; I returned 4:12:52 and Katie did 4:13:44 which was seven minutes clear of Karen Steele who took bronze.”

Season ‘99 and Letchworth Schils?

“The first year with them went well, there was a bit of funding for the National ‘10’ but after that the support backed off.

“And they lost my bike!

“They wanted all of the riders in team’s bikes sprayed in team colours but mine went astray… I did get it back eventually.

“We had a good team though, with Caroline Cook, Maxine Johnson, Melanie Sears and Liz Milne, winning the 10, 25 and 50 mile team Championships.”

Andrea Pogson
Andrea Pogson riding for Letchworth Schils. Photo©Cycling Weekly

And second in the RTTC ‘10’ that year, to Yvonne McGregor, not your usual distance.

“That was unexpected. My coach, Neil Lawson did a power test with me at a ‘10’ on the Longniddry course in East Lothian and I thought nothing of it but he said it was very good.

“It was a terrible headwind to the turn that morning with a strong tailwind back, my old friends from Eastbourne had come to offer encouragement and in the end I was second to Yvonne by 27 seconds.”

Season 2000 saw you set the SCU ‘25’ record with 55:32 – rapid.

“That was on the Perth to Dundee dual carriageway course before it was banned, the conditions were good; I’d had a two week break from the bike so whilst that ride went really well it was unplanned.”

Three times close to winning the BBAR, any ‘what ifs’?

“It’s easy to say now but I think if I’d trained more scientifically then I would have had a better chance.

“There’s also the aspect that other girls were closer to the fast courses down south whilst getting to them entailed a lot of travelling for me.”

Why quit when you did, you were going so well?

“I have some regrets about that, every February and March I’d struggle with motivation, all that chasing about all over the country.

“I’d be thinking to myself; ‘can I keep it going?

“I got into other things, running, horse riding, learned to ride a motorbike…”

Andrea Pogson
Andrea Pogson at the Scottish 50 Mile Championships in 2014, heading for a shared gold medal. Photo©Martin Williamson

But you ‘came back’ in 2014 with Gala CC.

“Yes, I think it was a ‘senior moment’ and I decided that I wanted another crack at the Scottish ‘100’ so decided I best ride a ‘50’ first – the National Championship down at Eglinton.

“I ride on average speed but that morning I realised I’d left my computer in the house so I rode on ‘feel,’ I tied for the title with Lynsey Curran of Dooleys Cycles with us both recording 2:2:45.

“The ‘100’ was up at Cromarty and at 90 miles I was feeling terrible and thought I was going to have to climb off but I knew I had time in hand and forced  myself to the finish; I recorded 4:22:20 with Lynsey on 4:25:28.”  

Did you ever consider the road or track?

“I tried the road it but hated it, I’m a time trial rider through and through, I just didn’t like being around all those other ‘twitchy’ riders.” 

You coach now? 

“Yes, Level 2 Mountain Bike Coach, Level 2 Cycle Coach, Level 2 Mountain Bike Leader – I enjoy encouraging others to get the best out of themselves.”


“I suppose stopping altogether, which made it very hard to come back – and I’d like to have won the BBAR but for the reasons I mentioned above that was always going to be difficult.”

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

Cherie Pridham – DS with Israel Start-Up Nation for season 2021

‘Glass ceilings;’ they’re there to be broken through. England’s Cherie Pridham becomes the first female sport director in the World Tour; she’ll be with Israel Start-Up Nation for season 2021.

Joanna Rowsell – On the Olympic Build-up

As the world is gripped by Tour Fever, it’s easy to forget that just days after the Champs Elysees protocols are done and dusted, it’ll be time for the Olympic Games, in London. VeloVeritas was lucky enough to get an interview with a lady who’s been an integral part of the dominant GB ladies team pursuit squad.

Katie Archibald – Another Hugely Successful European Championships

Most of the hugely successful GB Olympic cycling team are taking a break - but not Scotland's Katie Archibald who undertook a hugely successful campaign at the recent European Track Championships in Paris. And that's before we talk about her racing and winning at the London Six Day... We caught up with her post Paris but pre-London to discuss her two golds and one silver medal Euro haul.

Jessica Wilson-Young – the New Scottish Women’s 10 Mile Record Holder

It hasn't been the best of summers for going fast on a bicycle, but the last day of August saw the Westferry '10' course in a benign mood - Arthur Doyle (Dooleys) dipped under the magical 20 minute barrier with 19:45, not so far away now from Graeme Obree's 19:29 competition record. But the ladies' record did fall, with Jessica Wilson-Young (Edinburgh RC) updating the Scottish ladies mark by four seconds to 21:42.

Sally Ashbridge – British TT Champion in the Early Noughties

A lady we had let the mists of time envelope was Sally Ashbridge, who won the RTTC/CTT ‘10’ in 2001 and 2002, the ‘25’ in 2001 and ‘50’ in 2002.

Jason Macintyre Memorial Time Trial Goes to John Archibald

On a morning which delivered everything from flat calm with balmy sunshine – complete with midges – to a stiff breeze with stinging rain it was Pro Vision Cycle Clothing’s John Archibald once again delivering the result over 17.8 ‘sporting’ miles around lovely Loch Leven in the Jason Macintyre Memorial Time Trial which was also round four of the CTC ‘Knights Composites Classic TT Series.’ Billed as the ‘Tour of Glencoe’ that was a slight misnomer albeit the race did skirt Glencoe village and pass through Invercoe it was more of a ‘Loch Leven Loop’ but whatever the name the backdrop was stunning – Scotland at it’s best.

At Random

Tour of Britain 2007 – Day 1: Prologue, Crystal Palace

After making such a good job of his diary for Pez in the Tour of Ireland, DFL professional Evan Oliphant will be giving VeloVeritas the low-down on his home Tour, which started in London today at Crystal Palace and finishes in Glasgow on Saturday; the Tour of Britain 2007. We caught-up with Evan, in the DFL team car, stuck in traffic, listening to the chart show [at max volume] on Radio One, here's what he had to say, (I think!).

Aqua Blue Sport 2018 rider roster and first races confirmed

Aqua Blue Sport has confirmed its final, 16-strong rider roster for 2018 and for the second successive year will kick off its racing season in Australia and the Middle East.

Le Tour de France 2012 – Stage 17: Bagnères-de-Luchon – Peyragudes, 144 km.

I wasn't sure about the 'blip' at La Toussuire when Froome distanced Wiggins in the finale - I thought it was 'mountain out of molehill' stuff. Although we did hear that Wiggins was 'raging', that night in his room. But today, there seemed little doubt that a message was being sent; 'I can drop you any time I want.' The body language and facial expressions around the team aren't relaxed, happy or positive. But there's little doubt now that Brad will win - barring Acts of God.

Smart and Curran top the Tour de Trossachs 2017

Chris Smart (GTR) made it a hat trick of wins in the classic Tour de Trossachs 2017 time trial over 24.5 beautiful but demanding miles on a calm, mild and dry autumn Sunday morning, adding to his 2014 and 2015 victories - the race was cancelled last year due to roadworks.

Dunfermline Cyclo-Cross, Scottish CX Round 5

We took a trip to watch the Dunfermline Cyclo-Cross. It’s a wee while since we’ve been to a Scottish cyclo-cross race and the sport has changed beyond all recognition from the early 70’s when your ‘cross bike was your winter bike with the muddies removed.

Giro d’Italia 2007 – Day 2: Stage 1, Caprera – La Maddalena (Team TT)

It's now 19.45 on Saturday evening, and we're sat in the car en route La Maddalena listening to The Pioneers, 'Let your yeah be yeah' - crucial, John. The ferry port at Maddalena is grid-locked, but we've got our reggae and a cold Dreher beer, so waiting for the ferry isn't so bad. We shared the ferry out with CSC and Saunier, but they are long-gone on the first ferry out. It's been a cracking day, weather and gig-wise.