Germain Burton will make a return to racing with a new contract with British Continental team JLT Condor. The 22-year-old took a break from racing after withdrawing from the British Cycling Olympic Development Programme in May 2016.
Burton – son of former racer Maurice Burton – was hailed as a promising new talent when he won the prestigious Bec CC hill-climb in 2010 at the age of 15, and then successfully defended the win the following year.
He continued his development with strong performances on the road and track, helping to claim the 2014 and 2015 national team pursuit titles.
Burton did not openly disclose why he left the British Cycling programme at the time of his departure. He went on to study biomechanics and personal training, and is now ready to return to bike racing.
“I took time out to work on personal interests to better understand movement efficiency and injury prevention in training and general movement,” said Burton.
As well as his studies, Burton has spent time developing the One Life Cycle community project and did some criterium racing with the project’s team in 2017, where his passion for cycling was rekindled.
“I rediscovered my love for the sport whilst racing with a close friend and starting One Life Cycle, a youth cycling project, with a vision of getting young people in London involved in an enjoyable, safe, healthy community,” explained Burton.
“After a year gaining experience training a number of people, I felt I could reapply what I’ve learnt to my career as a professional athlete.”
Burton will appear in JLT Condor colours at the forthcoming Revolution Track Series, where he will partner Matt Gibson. Team manager John Herety says there will be no pressure on Burton when he returns.
“After [Revolution] he will continue with an endurance block before slotting back into domestic racing in a non-pressurised environment,” said Herety.
“He’s fallen back in love with riding his bike. We need to make sure we provide the right atmosphere that continues the love affair. If we do that we will see the very best of Germain.”
In addition to the signing of Burton, JLT-Condor have announced the addition of Oliver Wood from Team Wiggins.
The 21-year-old put in an impressive performance for Great Britain at the 2017 UCI Road World Championships in Norway, where he placed fourth in the under-23 men’s road race. Wood also has a bright future on the track with Great Britain, and is aiming for selection for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo – something that the team will support.
“Ollie is one of the best up and coming track riders,” said Herety. “That’s been confirmed with his fourth at the U23 Worlds and proven his ability to cross over from track to road and we are delighted to welcome him to the team.
“Tokyo 2020 is his main goal and we are a team with a proven record at being able to support riders with medal ambitions.”