Ben-Swift-Team-SkyAfter an enviable career on the track as a junior, the man known as ‘Swifty’ left little time for a formal introduction to the pro ranks, winning the King of the Mountains jersey at the 2007 Tour of Britain, as a nineteen year old stagiaire, for Barloworld. A podium finish on the second stage of the ’09 Giro d’Italia seemed to ignite a catalyst of confidence as the results became even more frequent and impressive.We get the feeling that overall victory in the Tour de Picardie, with stage wins in the Tour Down Under, Vuelta a Castilla y León, Tour de Romandie and Tour of California are just the beginning of a lot more to come. And to think that the South Yorkshireman is still just twenty-three. Yikes I feel old (and slow) but then my surname isn’t Swift, so I feel that I have a legitimate excuse…

  1. You can ride with anyone from past or present, who would it be?

    “I’ve ridden and raced with some of my childhood heroes, but now that I’ve grown up a little I think it would be pretty amazing if I could go on a ride with our last road world champion, Tommy Simpson. He was a local lad to where I grew up and knowing what he won in his career I think it would be a cool ride.”
  2. What was your first race and where did you finish?

    “It was a mountain bike race around the local country park when when I was three and a half. I’m not sure where I finished, probably last, but I finished and loved it.”
  3. Which race do you/did you always dream of winning?

    “It changes as I want to win everything, but the big three are Milano-San Remo, Ronde van Vlaanderen or the World Champs.”
  4. What is the morale boosting item you hope to find in your mussette?

    “CNP flapjack bar or a cola gel. Sometimes if we’re lucky we get a little sweet in there like a chocolate brownie.”
  5. Everyone likes going downhill fast, what’s your favourite descent?

    “If it’s long and fast with some good technical sections in it then I like it.”
  6. You hit shuffle on your I-Pod, what’s the track you hope comes up top of the list?

    “I’m pretty open minded with music and it all depends on what mood I’m in, that’s why I like hitting shuffle as it’s a lucky dip!”
  7. What is your favourite après race beverage?

    “Coca Cola.”
  8. If you weren’t a bike rider, what would you be?

    “I really don’t have a clue as I’ve never given not being a bike rider any thought.”
  9. What’s your favourite new bike product?

    “Wheels. I like to have nice wheels in there.”
  10. Do you have a golden moment when riding/racing that you look back on with a smile?

    “I like to think back on the wins that I’ve had and remember how they came about.”
  11. And the worst moment?

    “When you miss time cut in races. Thankfully it doesn’t happen very often but when it does there’s nothing worse!”
  12. Where is your favourite place to ride?

    “I love racing in Spain and Italy.”
  13. What or who is your biggest inspiration in life?

    “My dad, he got me into cycling and he used to go out with me everyday. It’s nice to get out on the bike with him when I go back to visit my parents.”
  14. If you could only use one word to describe yourself, what would it be?

  15. If you could have one super power what would it be?

    “To be able to fly would be pretty cool!” Well, I guess there is no better place to learn to fly than Team Sky! Thanks for taking time out for the 15:1 Ben and good luck for the 2012 season.

  Photo used above by CNP Professional and The Telegraph.