Dan Kogan, a former full time cyclist, talks about the Haute Route Mt Ventoux
Dan Kogan, 28, a former full time cyclist who works in the online media team at Sigma Sport, is off to compete in the 3-day Haute Route Mt Ventoux race, held 6th-8th October 2017. Doubtless it will offer a challenge even for a cyclist as experienced as him. We ask him about his expectations for the race.
First a bit of form. How did you get into cycling?
I used to ride mountain bikes with my dad when I was very young and then I raced cyclo-cross as a teenager. Eventually I switched to road cycling and joined Glendene CC Junior Team before going on to race full time with BMC UK Racing Team and then Orbea FGS Racing Team. We competed in Belgium and France, which I became very fond of, so I’ll be pleased to go back.
In 2011 I actually moved to France to race with a team in Brittany, UCL Hennebont. I returned to the UK eventually and since 2014 I have been working with the web content team at Sigma Sport. I still do a few competitive races each year. This year I’ve been to the Etape du Tour and the Sportful Gran Fondo.
And how did you come across the Mt Ventoux race?
I heard of the Mt Ventoux race through Mavic, one of their sponsors. I never competed as far south as Provence when I was in France and I don’t know the area, nor have I ever ridden Mt Ventoux, so I am definitely looking forward to it.
What sort of training have you done for the event?
I ride 250-300 miles a week anyway, but I know I’ll need to get back to top-level fitness for Mt Ventoux and so for the past six weeks I have maintained my regular distance while concentrating on intensity, with 15-minute power bursts. Mainly on the turbo-trainer unfortunately… Last weekend I was out for a long ride on Saturday, and then even further on Sunday, 200km. It’s all about getting your body used to long days in the saddle.
What will be the most challenging moment of the race?
The time trial on the last day will be the most challenging part, I am sure. Any time you ride 21 kilometres straight uphill at race pace it’s going to be painful… Some guys are lucky enough to ride in the mountains all the time, but I don’t know the climb, so I won’t know how to pace myself. And there’s the weather of course…
What are your general expectations?
I’d like to be competitive, but I just don’t know about the quality of the field.
Haute Route aim to offer professional standards to amateur riders. What expectations do you have of the organisation and logistics?
They’re renowned for holding slick and smoothly run races, so if anything there will probably be more care and support than when I was racing in a team. Generally though, I’m looking forward to riding a new climb in a different part of France. And I’ll hope to meet some new people out there.