News - December 28, 2016

2017 is going to be my year because … I want to become a professional cyclist

The Wageningen campus is usually calm in the days around the turn of the year. It is a time to look forward to the new year. Resource asked several students why 2017 is going to be their year. Jan-Willem van Schip tells us of his plans to become a professional cyclist.

Jan-Willem van Schip, bachelor’s student Soil, Water and Atmosphere

‘This past year, I tremendously improved in track cycling: in 2015, I was still just a rookie; in 2016, I participated in the world championships and the Olympic games. Next year, I want to focus on the road: I want to show that my good form wasn’t a one-off.

The switch is also mainly to stimulate myself: I could keep cycling on tracks, but that won’t make me a better cyclist. I am absolutely convinced that the combination of the two will make me a better rider. Last year, I built a good enough foundation on the track to be able to interchange the two more easily now.

Seeing others cycle during the Games has provided me with additional motivation: you see how fast they go and what they are capable of and you want to achieve that too. It is the same with studying: when I see others study hard, it motivates me to go for it as well. I believe that if you really want to get somewhere, it is possible. In that line, I will do my utmost best to recover from my concussion and get back on my bike.

I really like cycling and I want to show that I can cycle fast. That can be shown best when riding the large tours like the Tour de France and the Giro d’Italia. I enjoy my study, but I want to earn my living with cycling. That is why I need to cycle really fast at the start of the season, so I can be selected to ride professionally.’