12 Pros of Christmas – Manon Carpenter

We’re counting down to Christmas with 12 of our favourite UK pro riders.

Does Manon like sprouts? Does Ratboy love a roast? Does Peaty get presents? Tune in to find out.

Our first in the series is Madison Saracen’s fairest team rider, 2014 World Cup and World Champion, Manon Carpenter.

Manon Carpenter World Champion

1. 2015 is almost at an end. Was it a good year for you?

I’ve had more fun in a season before but I learnt a lot and am excited for next year so in that way it was a good year for me.

2. With off-season in full effect, have you been relaxing or smashing out the intervals?

No smashing intervals yet! Bit soon for that but I had a good month off making trips away and chilling out then getting stuck into gym and bike sessions in this November.

3. Favourite ride/race from this season and why?

I really enjoyed Andorra World Champs. I felt at home on my bike that weekend and the track was so much fun, in the wet and dry. The pits are at the top of the hill at that venue, so you’d be grinning the whole way back to the top in the gondola.

4. Worst race/ride and why?
Leogang was really rubbish for me this year, I wasn’t feeling right from Fort William the weekend before and I’d been sick travelling over. I was tired all weekend and topped it off with a disqualification in Finals after going off line on the final jump before the finish line. Safe to say I was a bit over finish jumps after those two weeks!

5. What was the last ride/race where you finished running on fumes?
Mont Saint Anne was a hard one this year. The track was really beaten up and my hands went numb halfway down! I was hanging on until the end holding on as tight as I could, that was the most pain I’ve been in after a race run before.

12 Pros of Christmas. Madison Saracen rider Manon Carpenter.
Flying high on the Austrian mountain air. Photo by Duncan Philpott.

6. 3 top tunes of your year?
3 that you’ve probably never heard off. Apparently I like weird music…

7. What are you most looking forward to in 2016?
Starting the season feeling prepared and ready to go racing.

8. What’s on your Christmas list?
Need a new laptop but that might be a present to myself. Mine gets laughed at a lot, 6 years old and counting!

9. Will you be eating sprouts with your Christmas dinner?
I don’t mind sprouts, with bacon is usually a good shout. I’ll be eating everything I can get my hands on Christmas Day.

10. What will your New Year’s Resolution be?

Eat less cake?

11. What’s your number one stand out moment from this year?
Warming up for World Champs this year. Not an obvious one maybe but most races didn’t go to plan for me this year. I felt so ready to race and it’s a great feeling getting that fired up. The team were really supportive, we had our new carbon bikes and I was looking forward to seeing what I could do on that track. Excitement was high!

12. Name one rider to keep a keen eye on for 2016.
Laurie Greenland. After winning Junior World Champs this year I’m looking forward to seeing how he makes the transition into Elite.

12 Pros of Christmas. Madison Saracen rider Manon Carpenter.
Pinned in Windham. Photo by Duncan Philpott.