‘The start of a new era’: British racers and YouTube stars back new on-board cameras rule

The footage has great potential, say Alec Briggs and Cameron Jeffers

Riders compete at the Tour of Britain in 2022
(Image credit: Getty Images)

British Cycling's new ruling on on-board cameras has been a long time coming for those in the country's racing scene

On Tuesday, it was announced that riders will be allowed to record their own race footage, as long as they seek permission at least seven days before the event. 

Speaking to Cycling Weekly, social media content creators Alec Briggs and Cameron Jeffers explained how on-board cameras will open up a realm of opportunities. 

Since 2018, Tekkerz team founder Briggs has been a driving force in getting British Cycling to allow riders to capture their own footage. “I just knew the potential in it,” the 29-year-old said, “so I just kept hassling them.

“At the time, like 2019 or something, all the L39ION [of Los Angeles] guys were posting all their footage and I was just like man, it’s pissing me off. I was watching how successful that footage was and there was so much of that in the UK but they weren’t letting us do it.” 

After a sequence of pushbacks, Briggs began using on-board cameras as part of a trial scheme last year and has since seen his content grow in popularity, with some videos amassing millions of online views. He now hopes to turn the footage into educational content for new riders starting out. 

“I've been shooting loads of videos from this year, like crits and track and stuff," Briggs said, "and I'm going to upload them as full race videos with tutorials explaining for novice and newcomer riders how to put tactics into practice. You know, the theory behind it as well as how to utilise their own strengths and weaknesses and get round races.”

Like Briggs, Jeffers has been waiting a long time for British Cycling's latest announcement. The Ribble-Weldtite rider has previously fallen foul of the organisation's on-board camera restriction, having been fined and disqualified from a series of national events in 2019 for filming his races.

“The bank took a hit that season,” Jeffers laughed. “Now I can freely make videos from racing without the fear of getting fined."

Over the past six years, the 25-year-old has shared hundreds of race-day videos and vlogs on his YouTube channel. Today, he has over 125,000 subscribers, with his most popular video counting in excess of 1.5 million views. 

Asked how cameras benefit those watching at home, Jeffers said: “When I have on-board footage in a crit, it shows we’re going 50km/h and I’m doing 400w and my heart rate’s up nearly 200bpm. It’s a lot more relatable, I think, than just seeing us on the side of the road or on the TV screen. 

“I think people will be much more engaged with the sport, and hopefully it’ll help it grow," he added. “Hopefully it’s kind of the start of a new era of British Cycling, where they’re a lot more accommodating of new ways of thinking and the modern era.” 

In a statement released by British Cycling on Tuesday, delivery director Dani Every said: “I’m really pleased that we’re now able to widen the opportunity for riders and event organisers to capture on-board footage in British Cycling events, helping to showcase the thrills of racing and taking the sport to new audiences.”

Riders hoping to capture footage during races will need to complete this online form a week prior the event. 

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