Editor’s Note: This feature story and photos are courtesy of SCOTT Sports. The original post can be seen here.
Caleb Ewan is only 21 but has already made a name for himself as one of the biggest talents among the younger generation of top road sprinters. Apart from stage wins at the Vuelta a España in 2015 and Tour Down Under this year, the Australian who rides for the Orica-GreenEDGE WorldTour team receives a lot of attention for his unique sprinting position, which is about as low as you can go.
SCOTT Sports visited Ewan during his preparation for the Giro d’Italia at his European home base in Monaco to learn more about his life and what he does to be faster than the rest. Here’s his take on racing and life in his own words.
My dad was a cyclist when he was a teenager but then he quit. During my childhood when we moved out of the city of Sydney to a village he started riding again because the area was a lot nicer to ride than the city. That’s basically why I picked up cycling in the first place. I followed his steps and joined the local club. Before I was 10, I was always playing football. I guess that’s what everyone plays in Australia but when I was 10 or 11 I picked up cycling.
I didn’t do it because I wanted to become a professional I just liked being out on the bike and racing. I only really started to play on my mind that I could make a living and a career out of it when I was maybe 16 or 17. And that’s about the time when I started to win races. Before that I wasn’t really winning. I was a good rider and I was up there but not really good enough to be winning.
The hardest part, especially for young Australians, is to leave your home country, your friends and family and move over to Europe to race. When I first came to Europe I was 16 or 17. I feel you have to grow up a lot quicker than you would have to normally. Your life becomes a lot more serious a lot sooner. A lot of people my age would still be at university and do things that young people do while I’m already focused on my career in cycling.
I think I have to handle a lot more pressure than a normal 21-year old. If I’m starting to go bad, it’s not just me knowing it but my team, my environment and everyone that follows the sport and my performances. Getting used to that is hard at a young age. I guess you miss a lot of your teenage years but I think if you have success and you have a good life, then it’s all worth it.