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How McCartney gets his wings

By Kirsten Robbins

After stage 5 of the Tour de Georgia, stage winner Tom Danielson described his Discovery Channel team-mate Jason McCartney , as "so incredible and he has no idea how strong he really is." Just before the stage, Cyclingnews caught up with McCartney to find out what makes this talented young rider tick.

Many people have come to respect the work of McCartney and often want to know what type of preparations he takes on during the pre season. "I am more of an old school type of a rider," said McCartney. "I don't do any testing in the wind tunnel on my time trail bike or special testing on any equipment. I also do not do any type of fitness testing for my heart rate or mental training either. I think I am just pretty old school."

McCartney often trains in cold temperatures and snowy days in his hometown of Iowa City, Iowa. "For me if we have a lot of snow in the winter at home there is a great ski area we have," McCartney said. His off-season training combined the two. "I put a ski rack on my bike ride out to ski and then ride home. So I just go out and ride a lot of long hours and really long rides."

When he is not living in his home city he is based in Gerona, Spain with Team Discovery. "The training is a lot different than in Iowa. In Iowa there is a lot of wind and smaller hills. In Gerona it is great and a lot of mountains. But, I like both places and they are a good change from each other."

After having a taste of both U.S. and European life styles McCartney prefers to be at training at home. "Boy, you know it is always nice to be home. I know it would be nice to train at altitude and be in the mountains and stuff but, I really like my home and the area I am in and so it is just really nice to be there.

McCartney is at the start of a potentially stellar career as a professional cyclist. However, cycling is not the only thing on McCartney's mind for his future. "I think a little bit about what type of a career I might have when I am finished racing my bike," added McCartney. "I've done some cooking and I enjoy that. Cycling is a great sport because it opens you up to different sponsors, different avenues in life. There are so many things out there that I haven't really pinned down any one specific thing yet but, I do think about it and I have a lot of ideas."

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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in cycling from the community and grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all men's and women's races including Spring Classics, Grand Tours, World Championships and Olympic Games, and writes and edits news and features. As the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten also coordinates and oversees the global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.