Cyclist off on journey
A 22-year-old cyclist is heading to Europe to join Luxembourg-based UCI Continental cycling team in March.
Myron Simpson of Cockle Bay has a packed European racing calender ahead of him including the five-stage Tour of Luxembourg.
"It'll be great to line up against the top European professional riders but also other Kiwis who are already doing well in some of those bigger races," the former St Kentigern student says.
Mr Simpson began BMXing at the age of three and has been track and road cycling for about nine years.
He says there will be plenty of opportunities in Europe for exposure to the pro teams.
"If I can perform well in those types of events then who knows where I could end up."
Mr Simpson has been a member of the BikeNZ high performance unit for the last four years and competed on the track at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in India.
Differdange-Magic SportFood is viewed as a stepping stone for future grand tour professional cyclists.
The most notable cyclist from the team is Danish rider Lars Bak who became a member at the same age as Mr Simpson.
Last year Mr Bak won stage 12 of the famous Giro d'Italia (Tour of Italy).
Mr Simpson says his long-term goal is to be an Olympic and world champion and also to be a professional road cyclist in Europe.
Dutch cyclist Geert-Jan Jonkman, 28, has crossed paths with Mr Simpson through various cycling events.
"Myron is a really talented guy," Mr Jonkman says.
"In my opinion he's the best talent in New Zealand at the moment," he says.