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Pro Focus
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D R O P S

Pro Focus
-
D R O P S

Since their debut in 2016, D R O P S have been one of the most prominent and eye-catching teams in Women's Professional Cycling. Despite a rough time over the winter, D R O P S have continued and competed at the Tour de Yorkshire as well as the Amgen Tour of California. A hotbed of young British talent, we caught up with Team Director Bob Varney as well as Elinor Barker and Anna Christian before their race in the Golden State.

Elinor Barker - Rider

 

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It feels good to be in California! I think we all deserve a bit of sunshine after how horrible Yorkshire was. It's like a completely different world.
_

 


_

At Drops I'm not the only Barker in the team. I love riding in a team with my sister Meg. In terms of team dynamics, I think it’s different with family, because there’s that unconditional relationship there.

It means you can be totally honest with one another so the feedback is always good, but whatever gets said we know that we’ll always have each other’s backs.

_

 

_

Back in Yorkshire, the weather was awful. We used a new jacket that we’ve never used before - The Pro Jacket and I really liked it. It was a bit of a game changer and kept us warm and dry for a lot longer than I would except. That stage was block torrential rain, wind and snow, but, we weren't that bad off.

_

_

I won’t be carrying any GC hopes out in California but I’m Team Captain. It's an interesting and exciting experience for me but one which does come with its own pressures! Hopefully I can make the right calls on the road and do well by the girls.

_

 

 

_

It's really cool to come away and do races like the Tour of California. I’m fairly new to the team, so actually I’ve really enjoyed that we’ve travelled together and spent a few days here before the racing starts. Usually it’s quite in-and-out, so to be able to spend some time together and do some training rides here has been really nice.

_

 

_

It’s getting gradually harder and harder to combine track and road because both disciplines are moving on. The team pursuit times get faster and the road races get longer - physiologically they’re being pulled apart. Motivation isn’t the issue, but where to put your time and energy in training can bring some difficult decisions. I’m really lucky that I get to experience both, even though my road season is usually very short.


_

 

Anna Christian - Rider

_

From the moment I joined Drops I felt completely at home within the team and so welcomed by everyone. It was cool going to a team with so many girls I’d grown up racing with on the British scene.

I feel so lucky to be able to race alongside some of my best friends and have them as my teammates, as I definitely think this makes such a positive impact on and off the bike.

_

 

Since their debut in 2016, D R O P S have been one of the most prominent and eye-catching teams in Women's Professional Cycling. Despite a rough time over the winter, D R O P S have continued and competed at the Tour de Yorkshire as well as the Amgen Tour of California. A hotbed of young British talent, we caught up with Team Director Bob Varney as well as Elinor Barker and Anna Christian before their race in the Golden State.

Elinor Barker - Rider

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

_


It feels good to be in California! I think we all deserve a bit of sunshine after how horrible Yorkshire was. It's like a completely different world.

_

_


At Drops I'm not the only Barker in the team. I love riding in a team with my sister Meg. In terms of team dynamics, I think it’s different with family, because there’s that unconditional relationship there.

It means you can be totally honest with one another so the feedback is always good, but whatever gets said we know that we’ll always have each other’s backs.

_

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

James Fouché - NZL - 20

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"Having won the New Zealand national championships, I am really excited and roaring to get racing to show my new jersey off. It's always been a dream of mine wear the Silver Fern, so for it to become a reality is beyond words."

_

_


Back in Yorkshire, the weather was awful. We used a new jacket that we’ve never used before - The Pro Jacket and I really liked it. It was a bit of a game changer and kept us warm and dry for a lot longer than I would except. That stage was block torrential rain, wind and snow, but, we weren't that bad off.

_

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

_

I won’t be carrying any GC hopes out in California but I’m Team Captain. It's an interesting and exciting experience for me but one which does come with its own pressures! Hopefully I can make the right calls on the road and do well by the girls.

_

 

_


It's really cool to come away and do races like the Tour of California. I’m fairly new to the team, so actually I’ve really enjoyed that we’ve travelled together and spent a few days here before the racing starts. Usually it’s quite in-and-out, so to be able to spend some time together and do some training rides here has been really nice.

_

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

_

It’s getting gradually harder and harder to combine track and road because both disciplines are moving on. The team pursuit times get faster and the road races get longer - physiologically they’re being pulled apart. Motivation isn’t the issue, but where to put your time and energy in training can bring some difficult decisions. I’m really lucky that I get to experience both, even though my road season is usually very short.
_

 

Anna Christian - Rider

_


From the moment I joined Drops I felt completely at home within the team and so welcomed by everyone. It was cool going to a team with so many girls I’d grown up racing with on the British scene.

I feel so lucky to be able to race alongside some of my best friends and have them as my teammates, as I definitely think this makes such a positive impact on and off the bike.

_

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

_

 

It’s so good to have a British team with the race programme we have. I feel grateful for the opportunities that we have to race in some of the biggest bike races in the world. I think the message behind our ‘colour the road’ team slogan that we have, sums up the team perfectly. It’s not just our bright kit that makes us colourful, but the way we race and go as a team.

_

_

When it comes to racing, I'm proud to be British as I think the British races really lead the way in equality. All 3 women’s UCI races in the UK being near enough equal with the men’s organisation, prize money and media coverage. I came into the professional ranks of women’s cycling in 2014, and even in that short amount of time I’ve seen a huge progress in Women’s cycling which is really exciting for the future if it keeps moving forward and progressing like it has been.

_

 

_

The Le Col Pro Jacket was my staple item this winter! And was also my savour in the very changeable weather we were treated to at the Tour de Yorkshire.

As I spent most my winter training on the Isle of Man good winter kit is a must, so it was great to be in Le Col kit making them cold winter miles a little easier and warmer.
 
_

Bob Varney - Team Director

_

There's not one, but many reasons I started Drops. I'd run a U18 Youth Development some years ago and had the opportunity to get involved in cycling again during 2015. A twist of fate introduced me to the women’s scene, and it all stemmed from there.

I’d planned to have a year out of business in 2016 which gave me the time to commit to doing something different and challenging. Little did I realise how challenging it would be, but also very rewarding. At one point in 2017 we reached 7th in the world rankings which was pretty crazy! It’s been an amazing journey so far, and it’s not over yet.

_

 

_


This winter was hugely stressful for us with disappointing news from key sponsors. We've pulled through though, and it's a massive relief. It was a very difficult period, but we’ve come through and as the saying goes, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger…”

The support we received was very humbling but also motivational for all of us. We all work very hard behind the smiles and laughter. Just the way it should be.

We are blessed to be truly living our dream and weren’t going to give up lightly. The girls are role models for thousands of young riders worldwide and it was important to me to provide them with the platform to continue to be.

_



_


As a Team, Drops enjoys such a popularity with fans. I've given it a lot of thought and think it can only be the origins behind the team, and our "can do" attitude. We are honest, open and transparent about the sport and, hopefully, always approachable and welcoming to everyone we meet all around the world. I guess that authenticity and engagement is a huge part of that popularity.

_

 


_


As a Team, Drops enjoys such a popularity with fans. I've given it a lot of thought and think it can only be the origins behind the team, and our "can do" attitude. We are honest, open and transparent about the sport and, hopefully, always approachable and welcoming to everyone we meet all around the world. I guess that authenticity and engagement is a huge part of that popularity.

_

 


We would like to thank Bob, Elinor and Anna for making time to talk to us ahead of the race, and wish them the best in the Tour of California. Our thanks also go to @ewanthackerphoto and @jakelewisphoto of Sigma Sports for documenting the team at the Tour de Yorkshire.

Make sure you follow the team and keep up-to-date of their race calendar.

 
FREE UK DELIVERY ON ALL ORDERS OVER £100
 
 
 

_

I won’t be carrying any GC hopes out in California but I’m Team Captain. It's an interesting and exciting experience for me but one which does come with its own pressures! Hopefully I can make the right calls on the road and do well by the girls.

_

 
 
 

_

It’s getting gradually harder and harder to combine track and road because both disciplines are moving on. The team pursuit times get faster and the road races get longer - physiologically they’re being pulled apart. Motivation isn’t the issue, but where to put your time and energy in training can bring some difficult decisions. I’m really lucky that I get to experience both, even though my road season is usually very short.
_

 
 
 

_

 

It’s so good to have a British team with the race programme we have. I feel grateful for the opportunities that we have to race in some of the biggest bike races in the world. I think the message behind our ‘colour the road’ team slogan that we have, sums up the team perfectly. It’s not just our bright kit that makes us colourful, but the way we race and go as a team.

_

 
 

_

When it comes to racing, I'm proud to be British as I think the British races really lead the way in equality. All 3 women’s UCI races in the UK being near enough equal with the men’s organisation, prize money and media coverage. I came into the professional ranks of women’s cycling in 2014, and even in that short amount of time I’ve seen a huge progress in Women’s cycling which is really exciting for the future if it keeps moving forward and progressing like it has been.

_

 
 

We would like to thank Bob, Elinor and Anna for making time to talk to us ahead of the race, and wish them the best in the Tour of California. Make sure you follow the team and keep up-to-date of their race calendar.

 
 
 

 

With the team targeting top level performances in the coming year, we look forward to hearing more from our riders throughout the season, with their insight on the pro-circuit and its demands. With the first race of the season approaching fast, we'll be bringing you news of how the team get on at the Tour of Antalya UCI 2.2 race.

_

 

"On the other hand, getting stuck with a long term perspective often leads you off track in the short term. Because you are focused on a big target, recognising when you're starting to head off track is harder, and it can be a little while before you notice there is a problem.

This is most commonly found when people over-train and don’t realise it until it is too late, by which time they need to take some time off and recover before getting back to the program."

_

 

_

 

It’s so good to have a British team with the race programme we have. I feel grateful for the opportunities that we have to race in some of the biggest bike races in the world. I think the message behind our ‘colour the road’ team slogan that we have, sums up the team perfectly. It’s not just our bright kit that makes us colourful, but the way we race and go as a team.

_

_

 

"On the other hand, getting stuck with a long term perspective often leads you off track in the short term. Because you are focused on a big target, recognising when you're starting to head off track is harder, and it can be a little while before you notice there is a problem.

This is most commonly found when people over-train and don’t realise it until it is too late, by which time they need to take some time off and recover before getting back to the program."

_

 

_

When it comes to racing, I'm proud to be British as I think the British races really lead the way in equality. All 3 women’s UCI races in the UK being near enough equal with the men’s organisation, prize money and media coverage. I came into the professional ranks of women’s cycling in 2014, and even in that short amount of time I’ve seen a huge progress in Women’s cycling which is really exciting for the future if it keeps moving forward and progressing like it has been.

_

_


The Le Col Pro Jacket was my staple item this winter! And was also my savour in the very changeable weather we were treated to at the Tour de Yorkshire.

As I spent most my winter training on the Isle of Man good winter kit is a must, so it was great to be in Le Col kit making them cold winter miles a little easier and warmer.
 
_

Bob Varney - Team Director

_

There's not one, but many reasons I started Drops. I'd run a U18 Youth Development some years ago and had the opportunity to get involved in cycling again during 2015. A twist of fate introduced me to the women’s scene, and it all stemmed from there.

I’d planned to have a year out of business in 2016 which gave me the time to commit to doing something different and challenging. Little did I realise how challenging it would be, but also very rewarding. At one point in 2017 we reached 7th in the world rankings which was pretty crazy! It’s been an amazing journey so far, and it’s not over yet.

_

_


This winter was hugely stressful for us with the extremely late withdrawal from a new sponsor. We've pulled through though, and it's a massive relief. It was a very difficult period, but we’ve come through and as the saying goes, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger…”

The support we received was very humbling but also motivational for all of us. We all work very hard behind the smiles and laughter. Just the way it should be.

We are blessed to be truly living our dream and weren’t going to give up lightly. The girls are role models for thousands of young riders worldwide and it was important to me to provide them with the platform to continue to be.

_



_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_

_

As a Team, Drops enjoys such a popularity with fans. I've given it a lot of thought and think it can only be the origins behind the team, and our "can do" attitude. We are honest, open and transparent about the sport and, hopefully, always approachable and welcoming to everyone we meet all around the world. I guess that authenticity and engagement is a huge part of that popularity.

_

_


Our goals for this season were slightly different to previous years as we simply wanted to continue first and foremost. Everything else has fallen into place after that. Our big aim was to get a start in the OVO Energy Women’s Tour which we were thankful to secure relatively early to enable us to plot a programme to bring us to form for then.

So, working backwards we figured out the best programme for our budget, hustled for a bit more budget here and there to make it happen, and finalised a really nice programme. Omloop Borsele, Tour de Yorkshire, Elsy Jacobs in Luxembourg and the AMGEN Tour of California followed by Thuringen Ladies Tour provides us perfect preparation for the big one in June.

After that we’d love to return to La Course, but that will very much depend upon our performances in the next few races.

_

_


"Coming from the Southern Hemisphere into a Northern Hemisphere race calendar, I think the only real challenge is not doing too many races throughout December and January when it's peak racing season in NZ. If you manage that well then I think there are only benefits from living down here throughout the European winter. It makes it easy going out for training in sunny warm weather, especially since this is the time for base training with lots of kilometres."

_


We would like to thank Bob, Elinor and Anna for making time to talk to us ahead of the race, and wish them the best in the Tour of California. Make sure you follow the team and keep up-to-date of their race calendar.