FEATURE: Alex Manly transitioning from track to roadWed 21 Jun 2017
21-year-old Alex Manly is one of the youngest riders on the ORICA-SCOTT team and this year has been working hard to successfully balance racing at the highest level on the track with her ORICA-SCOTT road commitments.
Manly quickly moved up the ranks in the velodrome and this year competed at the Track World Championships for Australia in multiple events including the first ever women’s Madison World Championships.
Despite her young age, the Western Australian rider has quickly learnt how to manage her track preparations with her build up for the road season and has been able to transition from one discipline to the other in a very short space of time.
“I thought I would have to wait a bit longer before I got an opportunity to race a Women’s Madison at a World Champs but I got lucky and it was a dream come true,” said Manly.
“Luckily for me I train a lot on the road to build up fitness for the track. We do some long road days which I take full advantage of, knowing I have a road season with ORICA-SCOTT after the track in the back of my mind.”
Manly competed in this year’s Track World Championship in Hong Kong with her final event on the 15th April and less than two months later competed at the OVO Women’s Tour, one of the biggest and most challenging stage races in women’s cycling,
“I am finding the transition from track to road easier each year,” Manly continued. “I was racing at a level higher than I expected on the road so soon after the Track World Championships.”
“The intensity the track gives me is really beneficial on the road especially coming into the final stages of races, which I really noticed at the OVO Women's Tour recently in Britain.
“I also raced on the road in the Australia summer a lot more this year with the team which I feel is what greatly helped me."
Few riders find the switch from track to road an easy task and Manly acknowledges her young age is an advantage, as she continues to develop all areas of her cycling strengths.
“As I am still developing as a rider I find swapping between the two disciplines isn’t too hard as I am trying to improve myself in all areas,” Manly explained. “I am learning skills and techniques to help benefit my future ambitions on both the road and track.”
“I’ve been working hard on improving my lead-outs to deliver our ORICA-SCOTT sprinter into a good position and I find that my speed from the track is what has really helped me with this. The track has certainly complimented my road form this year.
“I feel lucky to have the opportunity to race in two disciplines and hopefully everything I have gained from racing earlier this year will help with my next road goal, the ten-day Giro Rosa which is a big focus for the team."
We wish Alex the best of luck with her continuous development and in the upcoming iconic women's Italian tour.
Photos courtesy of ©TDWsport.com