'People who know me know I'm sometimes a bit loco' - Lotte Kopecky's rise to be the best cyclist in the world

She may be ruthless on the bike, but does the world champion have a playful side too? Here's her story, from her football beginnings to skydiving over Dubai

Lotte Kopecky with her fists out
(Image credit: Getty Images)

This feature originally appeared in Cycling Weekly magazine on 7 March 2024. Subscribe now and never miss an issue.

It is an overcast afternoon in the medieval Belgian city of Ghent, and a racket is beginning to stir. Throngs of people have gathered in Kouter Square, usually a tranquil flower market, for the homecoming of their hero. Suddenly, a wooden cart appears. It trundles past the crowds, who turn to stare. On it, two rows of raucous men face each other, each turning their own set of pedals as they slosh their drinks and sing along. It is a beer bike, a staple stag do activity, and the revellers have just spotted someone important. 

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Tom Davidson
Senior News Writer

Tom joined Cycling Weekly as a news and features writer in the summer of 2022, having previously contributed as a freelancer. He is the host of The TT Podcast, which covers both the men's and women's pelotons and has featured a number of prominent British riders. 

An enthusiastic cyclist himself, Tom likes it most when the road goes uphill and actively seeks out double-figure gradients on his rides. 

He's also fluent in French and Spanish and holds a master's degree in International Journalism.