A Very Special Visit From A World Champion!

Pupils at Coopersale Hall School where very lucky to receive a visit from world champion Cyclist Mark Cavendish. Mark came into talk to the children about his career and how he worked extremely hard to achieve his dreams. Here are some key moments from his talk:

  • Mark was raised on the Isle of Man and began to ride bike at the age of 4.
  • After finding that he really enjoyed cycling, he entered his first competition at 11 in local races.
  • By 14 he decided that that was what he wanted to do.  He set himself a plan as to what he needed to work towards.
  • At 14 he knew he wanted to race for a German team – therefore, when at school picking his options, he learnt the language.  He did end up riding for this team and he felt that learning the language at school helped him achieve his goal.
  • Mark spoke to the children about how plans don’t always go the way you imagine but if you work hard at your goals then that is something you can control and that set you in a better place.
  • The people that inspire him are the those that were closest to him, those that cared about him and wanted the best for him.  He in turn wanted the best for him.  These people are not famous but they are the most important people in his life.
  • When asked ‘How do you feel when you have a crash?’ Mark replied – It is hard when you crash but I always get try to continue – I am aware that the race is continuing and that if I don’t continue quickly then I have a longer route to catch everyone up and hopeful get further than them.  I feel that you always have set backs but if you pick yourself up you can continue to chase your goal.
  • “My favourite race is always the Tour de France – it’s the biggest race in the world – and the ultimate in the cycling world.  It is 3 weeks long – 2,500 miles a day of cycling – riding everyday which is tiring and exhilarating.  It is obviously special when you are chosen to represent your country in the Olympics.”
  • “Just because you are good at something doesn’t mean you don’t have to work hard at it.”
  • “When you are disappointed then turn that moment and/or event from a negative to a positive experience.”
  • “Highlights in my career – being made a world champion – you get to wear a jersey for a year with a rainbow motif – it is really cool – that for that period of time you wear this.  I have won this aware 4 times.”
  • “Although I may win a race there is a team of us that work together 7/8 riders that help each other to get in the best position in the race and we work with our strengths and weaknesses as a team.”

Pupils and teachers loved getting the chance to meet Mr Cavendish and hope he visits again soon!