James Knox: I never felt I had what it took to be a professional

James Knox (Deceuninck-QuickStep)
James Knox (Deceuninck-QuickStep) (Image credit: Getty Images)

"It's not often you're in that situation," James Knox says, and then corrects himself. "Actually, I don't think I'll ever be in a situation where just 30 guys are 100 per cent committed to riding full gas with 200k to go. World-class riders were exploding out the back in the crosswinds and we just kept our foot down all day."

The situation in question is stage 17 of last year's Vuelta a España, where the peloton was rent asunder by crosswinds in the opening kilometres and Knox found himself in the elite echelon that stayed clear all the way to the finish in Guadalajara. 

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Barry Ryan
Head of Features

Barry Ryan is Head of Features at Cyclingnews. He has covered professional cycling since 2010, reporting from the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and events from Argentina to Japan. His writing has appeared in The Independent, Procycling and Cycling Plus. He is the author of The Ascent: Sean Kelly, Stephen Roche and the Rise of Irish Cycling’s Golden Generation, published by Gill Books.