Luke Lamperti grew up on two wheels. First, he rode motocross on his grandfather’s ranch and then long bike rides in his native Sonoma County. From that beginning, the 18-year-old Californian eyed the wider cycling world, from raucous criteriums to grueling Belgian classics.
We caught up with Luke, 2021 U.S. Pro Criterium champ, the morning before he raced to an impressive second place at L39ION of LA’s Into the Lion’s Den Criterium in Sacramento. Below is an edited transcript with the Trinity Racing standout:
You’re from Sonoma County. We read that you grew up going to your grandfather’s ranch and riding motorcycles.
I grew up racing motocross. My dad rode dirt bikes and street bikes, so I was racing motocross pretty young. We had a track up there, so that’s where we spend a lot of time…. Then I started training on a bicycle, was doing both, and then switched over to bicycles.
Where were you based in Europe this season?
A little bit of all over. The team has a place in Belgium, in Buggenhout. It’s just easier to be in Belgium because that’s where all the racing is. Then I was also in Girona, Spain, a little bit.
How would you compare Flemish racing with Spanish racing?
I prefer the Belgian stuff. I love the Belgian classics. I also like the Belgian stuff because it suits me a little bit more.
Do you have a favorite climb in Flanders?
The Muur (van Geraardsbergen) is cool. We did a kermesse where there was a lap with it.