BIKE Channel Canyon
- Founded in November 2016
- Founder: Tim Elverson
- Based in Hampshire, UK
BIKE Channel Canyon started in 2016 when former Pedal Heaven sports director Tim Elverson in parthership with TV channel BIKE, German bike manufacturer Canyon and Bikesoup magazine brought together a new professional cycling team. The team races in UCI Continental events. Inspired by the freedom and sense of adventure that cycling brings, the team aims to become the leading UCI Continental team in the UK, Europe and beyond.
Q&A WITH CHRIS OPIE
Where did you grow up?
On a farm, just outside of Truro, Cornwall.
Where do you live now?
After much moving around northern Europe and England, I am now based not far from where I grew up, in Cornwall.
How did you choose cycling as your sport?
It found me. It was a process of elimination as I went through different sports, slowly discovering I was useless, until I discovered the bike.
How did you get started?
A 100km charity randonnee when I was nine, which was 20 years ago this June!
What is your first memory about cycling?
Watching Bjarne Riis throw his TT bike in the Tour de France, or possibly breaking my leg on a bike when I was seven.
What do you love most about cycling?
The freedom, the adventure, the success, the places it takes you, the people you meet. Pretty much everything is a positive!
What is your most memorable moment as an athlete?
Signing my first contract.
What keeps you going and motivated in your training?
My goals in races each season and knowing my family rely on me doing my job professionally.
Do you prefer to track your power or your heart rate?
I've used power for nearly 10 years now and would feel quite lost without it. I use HR more on my MTB as there is a lot more going on than just pedalling, it helps you really assess how hard you are pushing on technical sections, you wouldn't see that just using a power meter. Both are great tools for anyone wanting to improve their fitness.
Do you follow your training progress yourself or do you leave it more to your coach?
I could possibly trust myself to set out my own programs but I much prefer to have the helps and advice of a good coach. I've been very fortunate to have worked only with exceptionally talented coaches who help keep the training interesting but also keep my head healthy and provide support when I need it.
What types of cross-training do you do?
I tend to use the mountain bike for most cross training, it provides functional strength efforts specific to cycling. I also spend a lot of time stretching.
What’s the most challenging aspect of your sport?
Gauging how well you are truly recovering. Luckily Polar provided us with a bike computer which incorporates fatigue and fitness testing in the unit allowing us to monitor this as and when we feel it necessary.
Tell us something we can’t find in Wikipedia!
I am building a camper van in my (very limited) spare time!
What else do you like to do when you’re not training?
I live in Cornwall, have a wife, two kids under five and a dog to entertain, so we live a pretty good life of exploring the coast and hidden beauty spots that not everyone knows about. And I need to finish that camper van before the summer!