Talking with Spencer
We caught up with the future of American cyclocross at the US at the National Championships in Louisville, KY. While many of these names are familiar, all of these riders are still in their early 20’s, and include superstars Kaitie Keough, Ellen Noble, Sammi Runnels, Spencer Petrov and Curtis White. Each shared some insights into who they are, what they want from the sport and ultimately why you should cheer for them.
Here is our conversation with Spencer Petrov:
Tell us something people may not know about you.
Jeremy Powers gave me my shot at racing pro. Pre-dating that I raced cross for 7 or 8 years, it’s my first love, still my first love. That first year as a pro I was overwhelmed, it’s been crazy. This year I’ve settled down and settled in better.
Talk about the future of the sport.
Really good to see the younger generation of kids excited about racing. Cross seems to be growing again, there are so many kids having fun and that are passionate about it.
What were you like when you were a young racer?
I was totally one of those kids that went to every tent to see every rider with every rider card, I loved it.
Tell us about the next five years of your career.
I want the U23 national championship jersey. I definitely want a professional national championship jersey and a Pan Am jersey. I want jerseys! (Following this interview Spencer won the US U23 Men’s title).
To medal at the U23 World’s would be amazing. Racing in EU, I have my eyes on the prize, I’m going to keep immersing myself and see where it takes me. I also want some C1 wins in the US, then to EU results as a pro male.
Talk about racing against and beating some of the riders you look up to, some of your heroes.
When I’m at the race I’m trying to pass everyone, I’m so in the zone. I’m thinking about how I’m going to pass this person and that person, that’s it. When it happens I think this is something really good. Racing is a puzzle that you have to put together and I try to learn from them, I’m always learning.
Why should people cheer for you?
I’m really really passionate and I love this sport, I’m giving this everything I have. I’ve been an underdog but I’m always fighting and having people cheer for me gets my engine going and I’ll fight even harder.
When people cheer for you what do you want them to yell?
Go Spencer is great!
Photo by Wil Matthews