For the fourth year running, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), cycling’s governing body, is offering a career path into the world of cycling though its mechanic training courses.
Based in Aigle, Switzerland, at the World Cycling Centre (WCC), home of the UCI, in the unique setting of the Swiss Alps, the intensive courses
provide a complete background in the knowledge and practice required to work as a professional mechanic, with expert guidance from experienced tutors and the unique opportunity to gain hands-on race experience.
Over the course of three, four, or five weeks – depending on prior experience – candidates will become well versed in the arts of bike and wheel building, maintenance, servicing, race preparation, and position on the bike. They will leave with a certified qualification from the UCI WCC. These qualifications follow the WCC coach education model and show that the candidate has followed a structured program and reached a certain level of expertise enabling them to find work either with a professional team, shop or a National Federation.
A Diploma graduate of the 2015 WCC Mechanics programme Jean-Louis Guihard-Thébault will assist as a tutor on the upcoming courses.
“I learned a lot here, especially concerning the UCI Regulations, preparing bikes for races, and the logistics of working at events. That is the sort of thing you don’t get in a shop.”
Guihard-Thébault will be delivering the course alongside the WCC’s Master Mechanic, Alex Roussel, who has over 30 years’ experience as a professional mechanic, during which he has worked at a range of major events, including the UCI Road World Championships, pinnacle of any road professional cyclist.
As well as being able to draw on Roussel’s expertise, trainees are offered the unique opportunity to spend weekends travelling with the WCC’s own cycling team, working as an active mechanic as they compete at races in Switzerland or neighboring France and Italy.
The certified courses, run in English and French, combine theory-based modules and practical learning, with weekly tests and assessments of progress culminating a final practical exam held over two sessions.
There are several courses to choose from throughout the year, catering to complete newcomers to the trade as well as those who already have considerable experience and wish their knowledge to be officially recognized.
To book your place, all you need to do is fill out a short application form, which you can find here.
For more information on the courses, click here.