We are delighted to announce that Ethan Vernon in our Upper Sixth, has been selected for the Welsh cycling track team, at the Commonwealth Games in Australia this year. He will take part in the Team Pursuit, Individual Pursuit and 1km races.

We have watched Ethan’s success on the track grow from strength to strength, winning many medals at junior championships, and breaking national records. The Commonwealth Games however, is another league, and the greatest stage of his cycling career so far. Ethan, at only 17 years of age (and will still only be 17 when he competes), is the youngest member of the Welsh team. Whilst he knew he was in the running for the team, there was always a tiny doubt that he might not make it, because of his age. Ethan received the confirmation email whilst on a training camp in Wales – literally straight after a track race. Only then could he be truly jubilant.

Ethan started cycling as a toddler, riding without stabilisers at just two and a half years old. He started BMX racing at the age of four up until he was 15 and became the British and National Champion, and European number two in this discipline, before switching to road and track racing.

Following some great racing success, Ethan was selected to join the British Cycling’s Junior Academy where he is currently receiving outstanding coaching and support, including nutritional and training advice. He has also been working with an aerodynamicist to help him with his body position.

Ethan’s training schedule is rigorous to say the least. With only Monday as a rest day, Ethan trains at velodromes in Derby and London during the week, and cycles up to eight hours on the road every weekend. During the holidays, Ethan attends the British Cycling training camps, which typically last seven to eight days and generally consist of three training sessions per day, totalling up to nine hours. Occasionally with a race in the evening just to finish off!

During his GCSEs, Ethan was forced to train more creatively so that his studies were not interrupted. He would cycle into school, not directly, but taking a 70-mile detour to ensure he clocked up the necessary mileage. This takes cycling into school to a whole new level!

Ethan told us, “It has still not fully sunk in and won’t until I get there. My main aim this year is to break the world record in the Individual Pursuit, and then onto the World Championships at the end of August. This is all part of my journey to the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.”

Ethan is currently studying Maths, Geography and Design Technology at A-Level, and when he turns 18, he will join the British Cycling’s Senior Academy to train and race full-time.

Head Master, James Hodgson said, “We are hugely proud and delighted that Ethan has been selected for the Commonwealth Games. This is a tremendous achievement, and one which Ethan is extremely worthy of – a realisation of all of his training and dedication to the sport. I wish him all the very best and I look forward to seeing his cycling career unfold.”

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