Truman makes instant impact for GB

Joe Truman at the Mountbatten Centre track. Picture: Mick Young
Joe Truman at the Mountbatten Centre track. Picture: Mick Young
Members of the Gosport BMX Club squad heading out to the World Championship

Gosport BMX squad target global glory

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Joe Truman further enhanced his growing reputation by delivering a brilliant display on his Great Britain bow.

The 16-year-old was handed his first ride in Team GB colours in the Omnisport Junior Championship in Apeldoorn, Holland earlier this month.

The pressure was off the talent, who rides for Portsmouth-based i-Team/KSL/InTandem, as he got set for his debut.

And he exceeded all expectations as he cruised to bronze medals in the individual sprint and keirin.

Team-mate Tom Scammell got the better of the Petersfield-based rider in the semi-final stage of the sprint.

And only Czech duo Jirí Fanta and Jirí Janošek were better in the keirin event.

But having only been called up to the Olympic Development Programme at the tail end of last year, Truman is already repaying the faith of his national coaches.

The teenager said: ‘This was my first ride in British colours, so I was extremely happy to get two bronze finishes.

‘It was a great experience for me as I was coming up against competitors I had never raced before.

‘I had no real game plan, I just wanted to stick to my strengths and use that to my advantage.

‘By the end of the event I had a chance to see the other riders race so I could see what their strengths were and try to work my tactics around that.

‘Racing against cyclists from all over Europe and managing a top-three finish was something I was never expecting.’

Truman was also involved in the British sprint team in Apeldoorn, alongside Scammell and female starlet Sophie Capewell.

He helped the squad to fourth place – only missing out on a third bronze by a few hundredths of a second.

Team GB clocked 49.817secs with host nation Holland a fraction faster with a time of 49.766.

Once again it was the Czechs who won – with an impressive 48.359 in the three-lap battle.

‘When we entered the boys’ team sprint we only had two boys on the team,’ said Truman.

‘Thankfully Sophie stepped in after performing really well in her own races. Even though we were the only boy-girl team, it didn’t make much difference.

‘We have all trained together so know what each others strengths are.

‘Obviously Tom and myself have raced against each other a few times so it’s good to have a bit of friendly competition there.’

Now Truman has had a taste of international competition, he is hungry for more.

And he is setting his sights firmly on the European Championships in Portugal in July.

In the meantime, he must keep impressing the British selectors.

‘I’ve never really been in the position to be considered for the squad so it is a very exciting new opportunity for me,’ he revealed.

‘I’d love to get the chance to race at a big competition like that but it is out of my hands.

‘It all depends on if I’m selected so I’ve got to just keep training and working hard.’

Truman is currently racing in the Revolution Series.

Round four takes place at the National Cycling Centre in Manchester this evening.