‘I only live 10km away’ - Cameron Mason on the pressure of a home British Cyclo-cross Championships

Scotsman says he will look to try and ‘take the race on’ at Callendar Park in Falkirk

Cameron Mason
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Cameron Mason has said he’s ready for anything at Saturday's British National Cyclo-cross Championships and is not fazed by the pressure that comes with racing on home turf. 

The Scotsman is the reigning male national champion, after his dominant display in Milnthorpe last year, and will aim to defend his title on his local course - Callendar Park in Falkirk, Scotland - this weekend. 

Mason told Cycling Weekly that he’s still feeling the effects of a recent crash in Belgium during a UCI World Cup round but that he is still well prepared for the upcoming action in Scotland. 

"It's going to be really cool," the 23-year-old said. "I only live about ten kilometres from Falkirk and the course. So actually, it's going to be quite an easy weekend for me. It's usually always so busy with travelling and living abroad, so to come home and do literally a home race for your national champs is a bit of a gift.

“There's naturally going to be a bit of extra pressure,” he added. “But it's for a reason, I can't say it's a bad thing, it's because I've been doing so well and that's awesome. So it's a cool thing, and I'm sure I'll feel it tomorrow especially with home crowds as well.

“Tomorrow, I think I'll just be trying to manage any stress so I can get to the start line in the best place possible and just do what I can do.”

Cameron Mason

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Racing for the Cyclocross Reds team, Mason has established himself as one to watch in the school of hard knocks that is the winter cyclo-cross circuit in Belgium and the Netherlands. 

He told Cycling Weekly that despite a spell of wet and cold weather across the UK, the course in Falkirk should provide quite the spectacle. 

“Callendar Park is always quite firm, the ground is quite firm which is quite a good thing for cross," he said. "We're so used to National Champs and British races being just like running races and such a bog, cold and foggy. 

“But Callendar Park is like a proper country park so it's slick on top. There's heavy sections and run ups and things. But I think it should be a good race track, and I'm excited to race on the Saturday as well and get a good go at the course and get it done as well.

“I think everyone's going to have to measure their effort,” Mason added. "In any hour of cross racing at this time of year if you go too early, there's a chance of blowing up. So I've just got to see what kind of day I'm on and what I can do with my legs, and then I'll probably try and take the race on but if that's after one lap or if that's after five laps, I don't know yet. We'll see."

The British National Cyclo-cross Championships take place this weekend, 13-14 January, and will be broadcast live on BBC iPlayer and the British Cycling YouTube channel. 

Zoe Bäckstedt has opted not defend her title in the elite women's race, scheduled for 11:25 on Saturday. The elite men's race will then follow in the afternoon, at 13:15. 

Youth and veteran categories will race on Sunday. 

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