Talented under-16 cyclist, Grace Lister, is going from strength to strength in her chosen sport after an exceptionally successful season in 2019.
Grace’s impressive list of recent achievements include winning the U16 Girls’ National Road and Circuit Series, taking silver on the track at the National Omnium Final and clinching the bronze medal with her partner in the Madison at the Track Nationals.
Following this success, Grace was selected to join the Great Britain Cycling Team Apprentice Programme last October, which means she is now coached by a national team coach.
Set in fortnightly blocks, her training and racing schedule is challenging to say the least. The hours are long, the physical demands are huge and there’s also the constant monitoring of her performance, using the data from her bike computer and the evaluations she has to complete.
On top of her training, which can be anywhere between 12-16 hours a week, Grace needs to travel to and from the velodromes in Manchester or Derby every week and spend many weekends away from home.
Obviously, this has a huge impact on her and, as the Apprentice Programme she’s on is part of the Olympic Development Programme, the stakes are high this year. What’s more, Grace, who is in Year 11, needs to balance her sports commitments with preparing for her GCSE exams in the summer.
However, last weekend, she got the chance to celebrate her accomplishments, as she was presented with her award for winning the National Youth Circuit Series by Team GB’s European BMX Champion, Charlotte Worthington.
The prestigious event, which was held at Old Trafford Cricket Ground, was followed by the British Cycling Annual Dinner, where she was lucky enough to meet Sir Chris Hoy.
Looking ahead, Grace hopes to build on her track success from last season to progress to the junior academy and, in the future, her ultimate dream is to make it to the Olympics.