Meet Our Co-Founder - Ed Clancy OBE
Our Co-Founder, Ed Clancy OBE, is not just the face of Clancy Briggs. He’s actively and passionately involved in every aspect of the Clancy Briggs Cycling Academy.
Ed openly admits it’s an off-shoot of his cycling career that he’s the most proud of.
That’s really saying something when you are part of the awe-inspiring team GB of cyclists, one of the most versatile track riders and the most successful men’s team pursuit rider in history.
For all the kids out there who dream of a career in cycling or just need a real Olympic hero to look up to, here’s a quick round up of Ed’s career so far.
If you’d like to use this for a homeschooling activity, there’s even some comprehension questions at the end of the article.
Where did it all start
Ed is Yorkshire born and bred and started cycling when he was just 5 years old. By the time he was 15, he was noticed by coaches at a British Cycling event and was selected for the first intake into the newly-formed British Cycling Academy System.
Ed really is about as qualified as you can get when it comes to understanding, developing and encouraging kids’ cycling ambitions. Whether they’re dreaming of having fun on bikes without stabilisers or aspiring to go to the Olympics themselves one day, Ed is determined that the Clancy Briggs Cycling Academy will help their dreams come true.
“The Clancy Briggs Cycling Academy is a passion project of mine - I’m so pleased to be able to give kids a taste of what it’s like to really feel the freedom of cycling and work at something with your friends. At the same, they’re getting physically active and having loads of fun, what could be better?”
2005 - Just after Ed’s 20th Birthday
As an international track rider, Ed has had the pleasure of cycling alongside the likes of Geraint Thomas and Mark Cavendish. In 2005 he got his first taste of being a world champion when he was part of the Great Britain team pursuit squad who took gold at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Los Angeles.
Ed’s First Olympic Games - Beijing 2008
On 17th August 2008, as a member of the Olympic team pursuit squad, Ed and his team-mates Paul Manning, Geraint Thomas and Sir Bradley Wiggins, broke the world record in the heats, beating Russia to the ride-off for silver and gold. Then, the day after, they broke their own new world record by beating Denmark!
In fact, during his career, Ed Clancy, along with his other cycling team-mates have broken the world record in the team pursuit discipline no less than 8 times!
In an interview with The Times, Ed commented: “This was my first Games. I was 23, Geraint Thomas was 22. We were riding with Bradley Wiggins, who we had looked up to as kids. We had nothing to lose, we could have won a bronze and everyone would have congratulated us, so getting a gold medal was pretty amazing”.
New Years’ Honours
In 2009, Ed became a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the New Years’ Honours.
Then in 2017, he became an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to cycling. When the Prince of Wales, who awarded Ed both his MBE and OBE, asked him if he’d still be ‘furiously pedalling’, he confirmed he was going to go for another Olympics in Tokyo 2020.
Interviewed after the investiture, Ed said:
“We spend our whole lives thinking about how to win bike races...we’re so focused on that we don’t think about anything else and when you get something in the post approaching Christmas saying that you’re going to be recognised by Queen and Country, it’s great”
It was a scary time for Ed in 2015 when he slipped a disc in his back and had to have surgery.
He thought his cycling career may not continue as he told Cycling Weekly:
“My whole career was in doubt. Owain Doull was there - remember when we were on top of that mountain in Tenerife I couldn’t walk. When I came out of that operation and I could walk again I was like anything is a bonus. If I can ride a bike great, if I can make a career out of the bike even better.”
When asked to reflect on his career highlights, Ed says his comeback at the Rio Olympics after his injury and surgery was a great feeling:
“Winning the gold medal at the Rio Olympics, it was hard work this time, really hard work. As you’d expect it’s never easy winning Olympic gold...when we finally scraped that gold medal in a big, horrible final against the Australians, it just made it all the more worthwhile.”
Ed Clancy has won lots of medals almost every single year since 2004.
Having been a part of the Olympic gold medal winning British team pursuit group at each one of the last three Olympic Games and a six-times world champion, Ed’s not ready to hang up his jersey just yet: “One last hurrah in Tokyo and then I think that will be me done!”
Ed should have been at the Olympic games in Tokyo this year (2020), but the games have been postponed until next year because of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Want to read more?
Home Learning Challenge! Comprehension Questions
If you’d like to challenge yourself as part of your home learning, have a go at answering the questions below:
- Who is Ed Clancy?
- Where was Ed Clancy born?
- How old was Ed in 2005?
- How many world records have Ed and his team-mates broken in total?
- The word ‘investiture’ as used in the passage most closely means which of the following: Party / Celebration / Ceremony / Gathering
- What happened to Ed in 2015 that could have ended his cycling career?
- Write 3 facts about Ed Clancy that you’ve understood from the passage.
- As used in the passage, what do you understand by the sentence ‘Ed’s not ready to hang up his jersey just yet’?
- Why have the Tokyo Olympics been postponed in 2020?
- Is Ed planning to ride at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics?