After helping Lars Petter Nordhaug to victory and finishing fifth on the opening stage at the Tour de Yorkshire, Team Sky asked their fans to put questions to Philip Deignan. Below are the questions the team selected and Philip’s answers.
What’s it been like riding in Yorkshire so far? How was the crowd? (Claire, Martin Holden, Matthew Eyre, Lorraine Holmes and Ash)
So far it’s been incredible. The fans have been so enthusiastic and it’s been a fantastic experience. I’m looking forward to the rest of the race.
How have the cross winds been in Yorkshire compared to other tours? (Jonathan Davison via Twitter)
It was pretty blustery on the moors on stage one. It’s hard with the roads being so narrow, and there’s very little shelter. Any winds at all and it makes it tough.
What do you eat after a stage? (Sam Roberts via Facebook)
Yesterday I had some rice and a CNP protein shake. That’s pretty usual after a stage.
How old were you when you started cycling? (Alice Holmes and Jamie via Instagram)
I was 14 when I started doing it properly.
Do prefer racing with radios, or without them? (Nick Holdsworth and Alex Walley)
I prefer racing with radios because it makes it easier to know what’s going on. Yesterday, for example, if we’d known there’d been a crash in the breakaway, we could have been a bit more prepared for the dangerous descent where Swifty and the other riders fell. It’s definitely better to have radios from a safety perspective.
Do you judge climbs on power output or go by feel? (Joel Robinson via Facebook)
I do a bit of both. I know what power I’m capable of putting out and sustaining, but that is dependent on how I’m feeling on any given day. There’s so many variables that you have to go on feel, but I do keep an eye on my power meter at the same time.
What’s your best advice for young cyclists who want to make it to the professional level? (Georgia Mansfield via Twitter and Jonathan Acton via Facebook and Kyle Wallace via Instagram)
Just enjoy it as much as you can and have fun. Being around a good group of people always helps as well so I’d say try and join a good club.
What do you do to relax & switch off from cycling? (Sharon Forward via Facebook)
I go to the beach, restaurants, the cinema, and do as many normal things as I can that don’t involve a bike.
Do you prefer one day races or stage races? (Warren Phillips via Twitter)
I prefer stage races because I tend to get into the flow of the racing better after a few days and that’s where I tend to ride best.
What race would you most like to win? (Noah via Twitter and George Abrutat and Luke Green via Instagram)
It’d have to be the Tour de France, or as an Irishman I’d also like to win the Ras (Tour of Ireland).
What’s the most challenging part of being a professional cyclist? (Liz Rushby and Kyle Booher via Instagram)
Where shall I start (laughs). It’s a strict lifestyle as we’re always trying to keep our weight down. We go to bed early each night and have to deal with bad weather, crashes and injuries which are all part of the job.
What’s your favourite training ride in Donegal? (Dan Mitchell via Facebook and Paul Barton via Twitter)
From Letterkenny there’s a 120km loop through Portsalon, over to Downings along Atlantic Drive and then back down through Church Hill which has stunning scenery.
What has been your proudest moment as a cyclist? (Josh Aldridge via Twitter)
Probably when I won a stage at the Vuelta a Espana. I ended up finishing ninth in that race as well, which was a big result for me.
What’s the worst conditions you’ve ever raced in? (Pete via Instagram)
Last years Giro d’Italia has to be right up there. There was a lot of snow when we rode over the Stelvio and Gavia.
What’s your favourite thing about riding for Team Sky? (Alex Dewey via Instagram)
It’s such a great set-up here, nothing is too much for us. Everything’s so meticulous, and we’ve got great staff, riders and equipment.
If you weren’t a cyclist, what would you be? (Ciara O’Connor via Instagram)
I don’t know. I was a milkman before I made it as a cyclist, so maybe I’d go back to doing that. I used to enjoy the early mornings and getting finished early.
If you could have one super power, which would you have? (Dave Ellison via Facebook)
I’d like to be able to read people’s minds.
Fish and Chips or Yorkshire puddings? (Liz Rushby via Twitter)
I haven’t had fish and chips in Yorkshire yet, but I’ve had a few puddings so I think I’ll stick with those (laughs).