‘I hope I get a cow’ - Josh Tarling aiming for the top prize at World Championships

Welshman competing in elite men’s individual time trial on Friday afternoon

Josh Tarling
(Image credit: SW Pix)

Josh Tarling might be among the outside favourites for Friday's World Championships men's individual time trial, but the Welshman has his eyes on more than a rainbow jersey.

"Hopefully I'll get a cow," the 19-year-old joked to Cycling Weekly this week, referencing the bonus prize that all podium finishers attain. However, despite his age, the Ineos Grenadiers rider will only have one attempt at netting one, in the elite men's race.

Tarling will go up against multiple stars of the WorldTour in Stirling including his Ineos Grenadiers teammate Filippo Ganna of Italy. 

He told the media, including Cycling Weekly, on Friday that his exposure to the world class Ineos setup is one of the main reasons behind him being moved up to the elite category at the Worlds. 

“I just think like at a race with these guys you get all kinds of like, knowledge and other help as well,” Tarling explained. “We’ve been out on the bikes all morning together, had a massage, everything. So I just don't think it would be fair, you know, I get all the experiences in races and stuff. So it'd be hard for an under 23 to replicate that.” 

“So I'll just try and mix it up with the big boys,” he added. 

Tarling joined Ineos this year after winning the junior world time trial title in Wollongong last year and landed the British national elite time trial title in June. 

He said that he was already looking ahead to potentially participating at the Paris Olympics and was determined to make the most of the chances given to him in an Ineos jersey between now and then. 

“It's just about taking whatever chances they give me, you know, and never turning down a race,” he explained. “I have actually had a look at the Olympics TT course, it's really cool, really good and the road race too. 

“So yeah, but that's just like a general goal but with the team, it's just about never turning down any opportunities and seeing where it takes you.” 

Tarling’s impressive results have rightfully meant that he is being considered as an outside favourite for a medal in Stirling this week alongside the likes of Ganna, Belgian duo Remco Evenepoel and Wout van Aert, and Switzerland’s Stefan Küng.

Earlier this week, Ineos performance engineer Dan Bigham heaped praise on Tarling and backed him to get a good result. 

“Phwoaaar well if Dan says it,” Tarling joked. “I don't know, I'll just try to do the best I can and see where I end up, hopefully I'll get a cow.” 

Tarling will be able to call upon fellow Welshman Geraint Thomas for guidance and support ahead of the time trial. 

The 19-year-old said he was looking forward to spending time in Thomas’ company again after being apart since an Ineos winter training camp last year. 

“I haven't seen G since the camp at the start of the year,” Tarling said. “He's off doing bigger and cooler races than me. I'll just keep listening in when he's speaking and might steal a thing or two from him. 

“He's competition he is,” Thomas - who was also present in the British Cycling hotel - added with a smile. “I'm not going to tell him too much.”

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Tom Thewlis

Tom is a News and Features Writer at Cycling Weekly, and previously worked in communications at Oxford Brookes University. He has reported from a wide range of races and events including the Tour de France and World Championships.