CYCLING champion Oscar Nilsson-Julien stepping it up a gear as he cements his place in Team GB.
The 17-year-old prodigy from Kentish Town has peddled his way on the podium at home and abroad to establish himself as one of the best racers in the country.
Oscar has recently come off the back of a very successful summer. Just last month he won the first stage of the Junior Tour of Wales, arguably one of the biggest road races in the UK.
“That was one of the highlights of my year,” he said. “It feels good to race against some of the best in the UK. Everyone has worked so hard to be there, so its nice to feel a part of that positive energy.”
Another of Oscar’s big successes came at the European Championship in Ghent, Belgium, where he won gold for Great Britain in the team pursuit, a victory he described as “an amazing feeling”.
“When we were on the podium we had Germany on one side and Russia on the other, it’s obviously great to represent your country like that.”
Oscar’s wins on the road could yet have earned him a place at the Junior World Championships which take place in Harrogate, Yorkshire, in October.
The speedster, who travels to the National Cycling Centre in Manchester to train twice a month with Team GB, has been just as devastating on the track, winning a medal in every event that he took part in during the National Championships.Oscar won the Gold Medal and National Title in the Scratch Race and Silver in the Madison, while also winning bronze in the individual pursuit, The Kilo and the Points Race.
With all the glory that Oscar has celebrated in his first 12 months competing for his country he would be forgiven for dreaming of one day starring at an Olympics or the Tour de France. But like a true professional he maintains a humble approach to the sport that he loves.
“I don’t want to plan too far into the future, and think about all the years ahead,” he said. “It has made me feel good knowing I’ve done something that not everyone else has done, and when you look at the list of people who have won the same things that I have it does make me think ‘why not?’.
“But to be honest I’m just happy with what I’ve accomplished this year. Maybe I could have believed in myself a little bit more and pushed myself even harder. I’ve won a lot races and been up there which is something I didn’t expect.”
While Oscar awaits to hear news about the Junior World Championships, the six-former is juggling training with studying sociology and maths A levels at Camden School for Girls. He added: “I’m quite lucky, my school has been really great and understanding. I get time off when I have to compete in competitions or if I have an important training camp.”