Sun 7 Jun 2020
For part two of our #UnsungHeroes series, we spoke to former Australian champion Alex Edmondson to find out who really inspired and helped him to become the cyclist he is today.
Who was there when he wanted to give up, who gave him the helping hand to pursue his dreams and develop into the professional rider he is today?
Can you name someone that had a large impact on helping you to start your career?
“There’s two, my parents. They have always supported and encouraged me from the very beginning. From the 11-year-old who just started cycling up and until now they have been my biggest supporters.”
What exactly did they do to help you?
“From the very beginning they would drop everything to drive me to all of my training sessions, sit in a freezing cold velodrome or stand on a road in the bucketing down rain, for hours and hours, and not once did they complain about it.
“As well as this, whenever there was a completion interstate they would be so excited and drive the 12hours to the race and always be so positive.”
Why was that so important to you in making you who you are today?
“I feel like this has played a huge roll in what I am able to do these days because without it I wouldn’t have the experiences that have allowed me to learn and become a better cyclist.”
Do you think you would be as good as you are today without their help?
“100% not, I feel like if they hadn’t been so supportive and encouraging I would have quit a long time ago so I have an awful lot to thank them for.”
Can you name a specific moment/memory that you have of them helping you that stands out?
“Yes there’s a clear moment for me. It was when I was 12 years old. I had just spent my first year in the Talent Search Program when everyone else got told they had been given another year in the program, while I got told that I was cut because they didn’t see any potential in being a cyclist and I should look for another career.
“Obviously I was pretty upset, but this is when my parents said ‘Look, obviously this isn’t ideal and it’s hard to take, but why don’t you use this as motivation and every time you get on a bike think about this and prove a point!.’
“So that’s what I did and here I am today. ‘What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger!”
Do they still have an impact on your career today?
“Yes, even though I now live overseas they are always there encouraging me and asking how my training and races are going.”
Do you think they are proud of you?
“Well, I hope so!”
Do you think they realise how much they assisted you to build your career?
“I think to an extent they do but I don’t think they fully understand how much they do. Obviously being my parents they say it’s just their job to give their kids the best up bringing they can but I can honestly say they went above and beyond that!”
What traits do they have that inspire you?
“Obviously they are my parents so I have to love them but they are both so strong, caring and driven. No mater the situation they are always there to be able to put things into perspective.”
Have they been to any watch any of your professional races?
“Yes, they have been to a lot of the races in Australia and also to the Olympics in Rio which was super special to have them to share the moment with them.”
Thanks Mr and Mrs Edmondson!
- Part 1: Jess Allen
- Part 2: Alex Edmondson
- Part 3: Amanda Spratt – coming soon!