Reports from the front line of grassroots women‚Äôs racing in the UK from feminist and second cat racer Hannah Nicklin. Let's go! ūüí™

More About Hannah

Hannah Nicklin at the Lovelo Cinnelli Road Race
Photo credit: Matt Buckley

I’m Hannah Nicklin, a South London-based cyclist, originally from Lincolnshire. My sport growing up was swimming, which I¬†did to a county level, with the odd international meet.¬†I¬†stopped swimming to concentrate on my studies (eventually completing a PhD) but picked up swimming again in my mid-20s. In 2012 I decided to try a ‘sprint’ triathlon, as a way to motivate my¬†running and swimming training, and bought a ¬£100 steel road bike. In 2013 I did an Olympic distance triathlon, in 2014 a Half-Ironman distance, and in 2015 I completed the Outlaw Ironman distance triathlon in Nottingham (by this point I had bought a better bike).

Having run out of triathlon distances I¬†thought it would be useful to try and actually get better, rather than go further, and as cycling was by far my weakest discipline I attended a women’s novice race training session at Cyclopark in Kent, run by¬†Huw Williams. Coupled with some novice Twilight Races at the circuit, I¬†discovered the world of crit racing, and it turned out to be way more fun that triathlon! I¬†was hooked.

I first pinned on a race number on the 5th October 2015. I went from cat 4 to 2 in my first full season (2016), in 2017 I rode for Velo Club Londres, and then Twickenham CC, tackling more challenging road races, stage racing, National Series races, and the Women’s Team Series. Huw Williams, based at Cadence Performance became my¬†coach in 2017 and I’ve been working with him since. In 2018 I’ll be racing for Les Filles Queen of the Mountains Racing Team, focussing on being more aggressive in Women’s Team Series level events, and beginning to hold my own at the National Series level. I may even try the odd Belgie race.

In ‘real life‘ I works as a writer and narrative designer, performer, and academic in the realms of experimental art¬†and video games. I was also a member of the 2017 ¬†London Women’s Racing League committee; LWR¬†played a key role in my journey into the sport in 2016, and I enjoyed repaying the favour by being their Social Media Secretary. Do follow their work if you’re new to the British women’s domestic racing scene in and around London.