Eddie Anderson is professional cyclist from Richmond curently racing for Alpecin-Fenix. He also happens to be one of our favorite customers and one of the nicest cyclists you'll ever meet. We asked him a few questions ahead of his first season with an elite team!
Congrats on signing with Alpecin-Fenix. What are your expectations for the upcoming cycling season? Are there any domestic races on your calendar or are they all overseas?
I could not be more excited for the upcoming season. I am going into the year with an open mind, and excited to learn as much as possible. I don't have an official race schedule yet, but I am looking forward to supporting my teammates and helping Alpecin-Fenix find success in the road races in every way I can. This year, Alpecin-Fenix wants to introduce gravel racing into their calendar as well, so I plan to be back stateside in the summer for the big gravel events.
Where will you be doing most of your training?
As far as training goes, when I am in Europe my training base will be Girona, Spain and in the US I'll mostly be in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Speaking of training, you've spent plenty of time in some of the world's best areas for cycling. How does Virginia stack up as far as amazing places to train? I know you love riding around Charlottesville!
Man, don't even get me started about the riding in Virginia. Seriously, it is some of the very BEST in the world. My home base in Charlottesville is home to a network of roads so expansive that I'm sure I will never ride them all. On top of that, the views are breathtaking, the roads are quiet, and the drivers are friendly. The riding in Virginia rivals anywhere I have been, and I am lucky to have such a great playground for training out my door. Don't believe me? Ask Ben King, Bryan Lewis, or anyone else who has ridden here...
Although now I do most of my training in Charlottesville, I'd like to also take a moment to highlight the riding that Richmond has to offer. Richmond was my training base for a long time, and has terrific riding as well. From the scenic views on Riverside drive to hard hill repeats on Old Gun, the roads offer a great place to train. On top of the road riding, the quick access to mountain biking within the city is unparalleled, and the James River Park System is home to some of my favorite trails of all time.
What are some of your favorite road/gravel loops out in the Central Virginia region?
As far as my favorite rides in the region, it's hard to beat a nice loop on the Blue Ridge Parkway in the summer. This is one of my favorite climbing rides, named the "Keckosaurus" after the infamous Keck Baker. The network of gravel roads outside of Charlottesville is also very expansive; this is one of my favorite gravel routes from town.
Will you be doing a mixture of road and MTB races this year?
One of the things that initially attracted me to Alpecin-Fenix was their multidisciplinary approach to racing. They encourage their riders to race multiple disciplines, and I am excited to bring this approach to my racing as well. I'll be lining up at a mixture of road and gravel races this year for sure. Mountain biking is a possibility as well, but it will not be my focus. Although, I would love to race the world cup at Snowshoe in September if the opportunity arises.
We love talking gear here at the bike shop. What are some of your favorite pieces of kit or equipment over the last year or two that you just can't ride without?
It is easy to geek out over gear in our sport; I could talk equipment for days... haha. A good base layer goes a long way in the winter for keeping your core warm. A cycling rain jacket is also a great insulator and emergency layer if it is cold; because they don't breathe well, they trap a lot of heat. If I'm headed out for a big ride, I'll pack my MSR water filter. Finally, my saddlebag is always stocked with a tube, CO2/pump, tire lever, multitool (with chain breaker), and $20 bill (which doubles as a tire boot).
Thanks Eddie, good luck! We'll be cheering for ya!