Jess Allen: I want to be the best domestique in the world

Former junior TT world champion on using another year with Mitchelton-Scott to keep improving

Jess Allen says that she wants to be "the best domestique in the world" for her Mitchelton-Scott teammates in 2019, while continuing to learn and gain experience so that she can one day put herself in a position to win the world's biggest races.

Allen will continue with the Australian outfit in 2019, and is looking forward to being of even further help to her teammates later on in races, having already contributed to the team's overall victory at the Giro Rosa in July, along with a number of other WorldTour events this season.

"My role in the team the last two seasons has been as a 'worker', and I've loved it," Allen said on the team's website. "We have some of the best riders in the world at Mitchelton-Scott, and I want to be the best domestique in the world for them until I'm strong enough to win races myself.

"I know I may fly under the radar to people who just look at the race results, but I know how hard I work for the team, and I am proud of that," she continued. "All of my teammates are humble winners and always acknowledge me for my hard work after every race, so that's what most important to me."

Allen may be waiting for the day that she can take her own chances to win, but her small number of victories so far have been hugely significant. She was the junior time trial world champion in 2011, winning the title in Copenhagen, Denmark, and then won the road race at the 2014 Oceania Championships, while riding for the Jayco/Apollo Victoria Institute of Sport team.

She joined what was then Orica-AIS midway through the 2016 season, and continued with the team – then as Orica-Scott – in 2017, when she took a solo victory at the national criterium championships at the start of the season. 

With Mitchelton-Scott in 2018, Allen has continued to learn and improve, supporting her teammates by working in the sprint lead-out trains and helping to pull back breakaways.

"Being a worker the last two-and-a-half seasons has made me a stronger rider, and I'll continue to get stronger because of it," said Allen. "I've learnt a lot about myself this season: how hard I can push myself, and learning to use my energy more wisely.

"I've been a part of 10 WorldTour race wins this season and our first Grand Tour win [Annemiek van Vleuten's overall win at the Giro Rosa], and although I didn't win a single race, I know I contributed to the wins, and they will be some of my biggest career highlights.

"I'm really happy to be continuing with Mitchelton-Scott again in 2019 as I believe this team is the best place for me to continue to develop into the world class rider I want to be," the 25-year-old Australian said. "I'll be targeting the spring Classics and I want to continue my role as a domestique, but I also want to have more of an impact later in the races."

The team clearly values Allen's positive personality off the bike, too.

"The culture in the team is really special to me," Allen pointed out. "All the riders and staff have a huge amount of respect for each other. We are serious when we're racing but we can all switch off, relax and have a good time, too. I love my job on this team and I know that when I'm happy off the bike, I ride really well on the bike.

"I love to post photos on my social media of me getting drink bottles for the team or riding the front to show people what my role is in the team," she said. "I’ve always had a bubbly personality, and I'm a firm believer that your attitude and personality off the bike is just as important as your performance on the bike.

"I like to be a positive and energetic person to help lift the team when needed, and I think that's really important in a teammate."

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