Andy Fenn travels to Spain this week for his first professional training camp with the An Post-Sean Kelly team. The 20-year-old signed a one-year deal with the team after the Worlds in Australia, and will embark on a full season of European pro racing after spending the last two years with the British Cycling Academy in Italy.
“I was looking for a team throughout the year and the next stepping stone. I’m obviously not ready for a team like Sky so I’m taking small steps. At the Worlds Shane Sutton said that Post had been on the phone and that they were interested so I just went for it,” Fenn told Cyclingnews.
The former junior Paris-Roubaix winner and current British U23 road champion will finalise his racing programme at the team camp but expects a season of tough Belgian races.
“I’ve got training camp next Tuesday in Spain, near Sean Kelly’s house so I might find out then. I think it depends a lot on which races we get invited to because obviously with Nico Eeckhout in the team you’d expect Belgian races. There’s a Belgian series, and we’re looking to do races like the semi-Classics and the Tour of Britain,” Fenn said.
“There are some big races that we should get into. It’s a whole new team and lot of guys have left but some good ones have come in. It’s a young team but one where I can develop."
Fenn, who last weekend competed at the Revolution 31 track event in Manchester will also take the plunge and move to Belgium – basing himself near other British professionals, Adam Blythe and Matt Brammeier.
According to Fenn the move demonstrates the opportunities for British riders outside of Team Sky’s influence. Still tied to the British scene and with Sutton helping him move to An Post means that Fenn hasn’t closed the door on racing for the UK’s ProTeam squad in the future.
“It was definitely too soon to go to Sky. Maybe if it was starting up now, but Sky now has ideas on where they want to take the team. They obviously have taken some young guys but I think they wanted to take more top guys this year around. Maybe next year though.”
“I have a one year deal but I’m obviously looking to move to a bigger team in the future. If I stay for another year, well that’s still an option but right now it’s a one year deal.”
“It’s a British team and somewhere I’d be aiming for but at the end of the day it’s just another professional team. It’s all about developing individually and there’s more than one way of doing things.”