Local Riders - Andy Sedgewick

 Andy was born and grew up in Sheffield. He joined a local club, Rutland CC at 13 and began competing in criteriums, time trials and cyclo cross races.

Bike racing took Andy to Holland representing English Schools on several occasions. He also rode the Junior Tour of Ireland following his 4th place finish in the Junior National Road Race championships that year. After finishing school Andy raced in France for a season achieving some success before returning to Sheffield to go to University.

More recently Andy spent 3 years in Vancouver, Canada, working as a bike mechanic at the Mountain Equipment Coop.

The draw of the 'Peaks' and the close proximity of the European hotbed of cycling pulled Andy back to Sheffield (actually Hope) in 2012.

He now enjoys racing for the Langsett Cycles Road Team based in Sheffield. 

As a racing cyclist, which results are you most proud of and why?

Two ends of the age spectrum here but a couple of results that I'm quite proud of are 3rd place in the over 30's National Road Race Championship and 4th in the Junior Nationals a long time ago!

I've had a few  wins at 1st Cat level and I'm quite proud of them too. After all, wins are something else!    

Which are your favourite stretches of road to ride on locally and what is it that you like about them?

I really like the climb out of Goyt Valley in the Cat and Fiddle direction. From the reservoir at the bottom you climb through pine trees which open up to wild moorlands and excellent views when you eventually reach the summit. The gradient is not at all fierce but you can make it as intense as you like.

Another climb I like is from Hathersage up to the gliding club at Abney. This climb goes up in a series of ramps. Great views all the way up and almost traffic free!

The same question for roads anywhere in the world?

I'm going to go for one of the iconic climbs in France. Luz Ardiden. It goes up at a steadier gradient than Alp D'Huez but steep enough! The views are fantastic and the descent makes the pain of climbing it worthwhile!  

What is your most memorable moment on the bike or involved with cycling?

This is a tough question for me because it's hard to single out an individual moment or experience when you've been riding for over 25 years. My season in France was a big experience and whole lot of fun. 

Has racing affected your relationship with the bike? If so, how?

At times racing makes the bike feel like a machine of torture! The obsession to achieve results makes riding the bike seem like a job. Certainly racing can take away some of the pleasure associated with bike riding but, at the same time, racing adds a whole different element to cycling.

Do you agree with Mickey Goldmill's advice to Rocky that 'women weaken legs'?

Having weak legs is ok sometimes.

We are in the midst of a well publicised boom in cycling in the UK at the moment. Has it affected you? Do you have any thoughts about why it has happened and whether it will continue? Do you see any negatives to the increase in popularity?

The boom hasn't got me into riding the bike or anything. I'd still be riding, boom or no boom. I do take pleasure in the fact that many more people are enjoying the same sport as me.

I only see positives in the increase in popularity of cycling. When I took up cycling it was a long way off being a main-stream sport. Now there is hardly a day goes by without the mention of Brad or Cav on the news. I think drivers give us a bit more respect because of it.

Britain's success on the track started it, followed by Sky's backing of a pro team and some notable results by top British riders.

Will it continue? I think so. There aren't many people who lose interest in cycling once they have taken it up. 

All cyclists, whether they race or not, seem to obsess over the weight of their bikes. Why do you think this is?

'A light bike allows you to ride faster, up-hill at least'. That's what people believe. 

Do you approach riding, or ride your bike, differently now to when you first got into cycling?

Not much different really. I still get the same kind of thrill out of it. I enjoy the freedom it provides and the challenge.

Who has been your favourite pro rider over the years and why?

Paolo Bettini  for his attacking style and happy persona. World Champion, Olympic Champion and winner of many 'classics'. 

What was you favourite era of professional bike racing?

The 80's. The era of Le'mond, Hinault, Fignon, Sean Kelly. Pre EPO.

Do you think Bradley Wiggins looks cool despite his long socks or because of them?

Ha. Good question..it's got to be despite the long socks. I guess that with Brad's level of success you are allowed to set a few new trends!

Leave a comment