Imogen Cotter Announces Retirement from Pro Cycling

Imogen Cotter

Imogen Cotter, a significant figure in professional cycling, has announced her decision to retire from the sport via an Instagram post. Cotter, who has encountered notable obstacles, including a serious crash, conveyed appreciation to her team and reflected on her journey in the sport. In her announcement, Cotter mentioned her increasing discomfort with competitive racing, highlighting feelings of anxiety and fear during training rides. She recognised that prioritising her mental well-being was crucial and made the challenging decision to step away from professional cycling.

Despite the challenges, Cotter expressed pride in her accomplishments, particularly in her mental resilience following her crash and subsequent recovery. She acknowledged the steadfast support of her family, friends, and partner, Youri, throughout her career.

Imogen Cotter’s career

Imogen Cotter’s cycling journey commenced in 2019 when she embarked on her inaugural road-racing season. Joining S-Bikes Bodhi, she delved into the realm of professional cycling, navigating the challenges of competitive racing in the Belgian peloton. Despite her limited experience, Cotter quickly adapted, pushing herself to the limits and earning commendable results, including a second-place finish at the Nationals.

Imogen Cotter
Imogen Cotter

In 2020, amidst uncertainties surrounding racing, Cotter returned to Ireland, where she explored Zwift racing as a means of staying motivated. Despite facing setbacks, she persevered and secured her first Belgian win, garnering attention from UCI teams. However, the toll of rigorous training took its toll on Cotter’s motivation, impacting her performance in prestigious races like the Tour of Flanders.

The following year, Cotter encountered another obstacle when she contracted COVID-19, disrupting her training regime. Despite the setback, she seized opportunities to represent Ireland and clinched victories, culminating in her first professional contract with Plantur Pura.

In 2022, Cotter faced adversity once again when she was involved in a severe car accident, resulting in multiple surgeries and a challenging recovery process. Undeterred, she made a triumphant return to racing in 2023 with Fenix Deceuninck, showcasing her resilience on the road.

As Cotter embarked on the 2024 season with Hess Cycling Team, she reflected on her journey, acknowledging the highs and lows that shaped her career. Despite her achievements, Cotter realised that the pursuit of professional cycling no longer brought her joy. Citing anxiety and a desire for a calmer lifestyle, Cotter announced her retirement from professional cycling.