Bermuda contingent to take on cycling’s elite in Road World Championships
Kaden Hopkins is relishing the opportunity to be part of the Bermuda contingent competing in the prestigious UCI Road World Championships in Belgium.
The 22-year-old will be joining compatriots Caitlin Conyers, Conor White, Nicholas Narraway, Alexander Miller and Liam Flannery to compete against the world’s best road cyclists in the 100th anniversary edition of the event in the region of Flanders, one of the heartlands of the sport.
Hopkins, who will be in action alongside White on the first day of competition in the men’s under-23 time-trial on Monday, is confident Bermuda can make an impact on one of the sport’s biggest stages.
“I’m really looking forward to racing the World Championships,” he said. “It is a great event for getting our country seen because it such a well-known, televised event.
“At the beginning of the season, I set this as one of my goals for the season. Not just to have a good ride, but just to get here.
“It is a hard race to qualify for, coming from such a small country, but in international events this year our national team was able to collect enough to get spots for multiple riders, something that is an incredible achievement in itself.
“In the road race, I think it will be a great place to test ourselves as a country. I have ridden the course and seen all of the decisive sections; I have no doubt it will be an incredibly challenging and hectic race.
“However, I believe we are all motivated and ready to go into the race with everything we have.
“It is always an honour to represent our incredible country and this is the biggest stage in the world for us to do that in national colours. I am very excited and very proud to go out there and give everything I have.”
The first day of racing will also see Conyers take to the start line of the women’s elite time-trial, with Flannery and Miller competing for the first time a day later in the junior men’s time-trial.
Both return for the junior men’s road race on September 24, while Hopkins, White and Narraway race in the men’s under-23 category. Conyers then wraps up the event the next day in elite women’s field.
Reflecting on his own aspirations for the championships, Hopkins, who is travelling to Belgium on the back of competing with his Equipo Essax team-mates in the Volta Ciclista race series in Valencia, Spain, believes he has the best chance of success in the time-trial.
“My main focus is set on the time-trial event,” he added. “I will definitely go into both races striving for my best result.
“Because of the uncertainty that comes with crashes and incidents in the road race, I just feel it is more controllable to have a strong performance in the time-trial.
“I feel with complete certainty that I am in the best shape of my life. These past few months I have really been focused on dialling in nutrition, training and recovery to make sure I can peak for this event, and I feel I have been able to do that successfully.”