It was Jacob Steep's dream to make a State team for cycling.
And about a week ago, that dream became a reality.
The 15-year-old will represent New South Wales at the under 17 Junior National Track Championships at the Anna Meares Velodrome in Brisbane at the end of the month.
The news came to Jacob's surprise, after he was told by a friend at school that he made the team.
"My friend said 'congratulations on making the State team' and that was how I found out."
"I was pretty excited because my goal was to make nationals, and I guess I have done that so next would be to get a gold medal at the Olympics," Jacob said.
Jacob isn't sure what race (or races) he has been selected for, but says he has a pretty good idea it will be for the individual pursuit, which he took out at the NSW titles a couple of weeks ago.
I was pretty excited because my goal was to make nationals, and I guess I have done that so next would be to get a gold medal at the Olympics.- Taree's Jacob Steep
The individual pursuit is a two kilometre velodrome cycle, racing as fast as you can go.
Jacob's average speed for the event is 60kph, which is 'pretty good' for his age, he says.
The NSW team only takes around six cyclists in each age group, which makes it all the more exciting, Jacob said.
"I am the only one from a country town who has made the team, the others are all metro kids so it is pretty cool."
Jacob also picked up a sponsorship with the National Road Series team in October 2021, which means he gets to wear their gear at events.
But he says the goal is to win a national title so the 'green and gold' will be added to his kit.
I am the only one from a country town who has made the team, the others are all metro kids so it is pretty cool.- Jacob Steep
Jacob is a member of the Manning Valley Cycle Club, riding between 200 and 300km in training five to six days a week.
Training over the next couple of weeks before the five day national event will look pretty similar, but he may add some morning sessions.
"I am not one to wake up early but who knows, I might do some morning sessions over the coming weeks."
Jacob is this week's Manning River Times-Iguana Sportstar of the Week, earning a $50 open order at Iguana.
Jacob will compete at the Brisbane championships from March 22 - 27. Two days will consist of training, and four days of competition.
After the event, Jacob will begin training for the road cycling season, with the first road event at the end of April.
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