Riders To Watch: Nat FaulknerBy: email@example.comPosted: Jun 26, 2002
Nat began his competitive carreer at the age of 10 as a competitive swimmer. At age 12 he began racing Triathlons and tried out nordic skiing, where he enjoyed much sucess. However, it was his early success in triathlons, where Nat won the Ironkids Championships at 13 (Same as one L. Armstrong), that proved to be an indication of where his future successes would lie. Nat took up road racing in 1995, at the age 17, winning Junior Canadian ITT Nationals in his first year. Nat was more interested in the dirt at this point and went on to spend the 97-98 season's racing Mountain bikes in Canada. In 1999, Nat returned to the road when he was offered a ride with the Canadian Pro team Jet Fuel, for whom he rode for 2 seasons. In 2000, Nat joined the Kissena Cycling Team. RaceListings.com caught up with Nat for this interview.
You had a very successful spring campaign with a win at the Bear Mountain Spring Classic, second at Jiminy Peak, fourth at the Sterling Road Race and fourth at the Monson Road Race. Did these early season successes take you by surprise or were these New England races important goals for you?
Two years ago I was 3rd at Bear Mtn. and Sterling, and won the Keene RR so I wasn't surprised to do well in May. I am definatly racing a lot faster this year than in the past. However this year the level of racing in New England seems higher than usual, so there are no easy wins.
What other races are you targeting this year?
Being Canadian, Canadian Nationals are naturally a big deal for me. I would also like to do well at Univest and again at Bear Mt. in the Fall.
Do you have a favorite race?
I like Altoona. Locally Sterling is a pesonal favorite - hard but not crushing. I also seem to feel great racing there.
What type of rider do you consider yourself (stage racer, climber, etc.)?
I used to ITT well but now I go well on power climbs and long endurance style of races. When everyone is popping, my legs are usually coming around.
What's a typical training week like?
Since Jan I have trained 6-30 hours a week. Average 22 or so. What I usually plan to do is something like this: Monday - easy 1h, Tuesday - 4h with 5x 1 min power sprints, Wednesday - 4h with 4x4min ITT, Thursday - 5h tempo, Friday - 2h, Saturday and Sunday - Race.
What do you like best about cycling?
Riding my bike. I absolutly love it. Especially those rides when everything comes together and you just fly along effortlessly. I love when I've attacked and put my head down for a while and then look back to see no one. So it's all up to me and my bike to get to the finish line first. Then there's the feeling of knowing that you won't be caught. That's awesome. I love that.
What do you like least?
When team tatics go awry because then you are mad at your teammates (friends).
What was your worst crash?
Last June I spent a month riding the track. I was training for the pursuit and points race but at a local event in Victoria BC I entered the keirin. I tried attacking underneath some guys and hit the concrete at around 50km. I lost skin in 18 places, saw stars, developed a fever and started vomiting 8 hours later because of the shock my body was in.
What Pro rider do you admire most?
That's hard. There are a lot of guys that I admire but if I had to pick one pro to be it would be Sean Kelly. That guy was really hard and could pretty much do anything when he puts his mind to it. Of guys racing today: Ullrich - I, and domesticaly Wohlberg, because he's just plain old hard.
What are your long term goals?
The 2004 Canadian Olympic team is my main plan right now. If I don't make that, and I am still racing locally in New England at the end of 2004, I am going to have to re-evaluate my schedule.
Is there a secret to you success?
Resting when I am not going well and then training hard when I am rested. After Bear Mt. I was flat so I rode easy 2 hours every day. I was still flat, after 2 weeks of that, so I rode 1 hour every other day and did the Hillburn Criterium. Every month have a rest until you're fresh.
Nat Faulkner Bio:
Date of Birth: September 22 1978
Place of Birth: Kitchener Ontario, Canada
Lives: Kissena Team Apt., Port Chester NY
Sponsors: Kissena, Spinergy, Shimano, www.teamactionsports.com, www.MultiLaser.com, Mom and Dad
Teams: 2000-present Kissena (check it out at www.kissena.org). 1998-1999 Jet Fuel Coffee pro team
Max HR: This season 212 trying to win the Tour of Southeast Ohio criterium solo last Tuesday.
Resting HR: 46
Watts/Kg: 420 (computrainer VO max)
Trains with a heart rate monitor: Yes, except on easy days/ weeks. The HRM is for busines and training - not spins.
Has a full-time coach: Myself. I have learned a lot from Mirek Mazur, Billy Innes, and other team mates.
Favorite movie: I have watched Braveheart a lot of times. But Rudy gets me all chocked up when I watch it.
Favorite magazine/book: I read Anne Frank's Diary a little while ago, and it really got into my head. I reccomend reading it. It goes by fairly quickly too.
Favorite music: Punk/ Alternative. My team mates don't agree with my taste in music, so I don't listen to it much.
Favorite food: I eat more chocolate than I should, but it isn't really food. I like my mom's Pizza, and burrito's that you get cheap at those hole in the wall places