Lawson Craddock 2021 TT National Champion
National Championships

Defending Time Trial Champion Lawson Craddock Looks to Repeat at Pro Road Nationals

By: Julie Goldsticker  June 21, 2022

Keep up with Craddock as he looks to defend his Time Trial National Title.

Reigning men’s time trial champion Lawson Craddock is back in 2022 for what he hopes will be a repeat performance at the 2022 USA Cycling Professional Road National Championships, June 23-26 in Knoxville, Tenn.

The seasoned racer has been around the sport throughout his life as the son of a cyclist. His father introduced him to cycling as a youngster and clearly shared his passion for riding with son during his childhood in Houston. Craddock has now been racing for over 20 years and his love for the sport remains strong.

“I think what I love most about racing is probably just the competitive outlet that it provides. It’s also nice to get out there and train for one goal and one event and put everything you have into it and show up at the start line and get to put all of that to good use and actually be in a competition,” he said. “I think that’s what I really enjoy, just the process of getting there and being my absolute best every day.”

At 30-years-old, Craddock is now a father of two himself, but he is waiting to see if his kids, who are three and a half and 18 months old, are bit by the cycling bug as well. He and his family split their time between Austin, Texas and Girona, Spain. “Since the majority of our season is Europe, you have to have a base somewhere in Europe so that you can get to these races easily,” Craddock said. “Girona was a pretty natural choice. It’s quite a popular spot for a lot of cyclists and a lot of athletes now. There’s great training and great culture so Girona has been our home for half the year for almost 10 years.”

Craddock’s family is able to join him for his European adventures in Girona as well. “We try to stay on the same continent at least. It makes it much easier so that when I do have some down time between races, we can actually spend some time there as a family,” he added.

Craddock’s father served as his coach during his younger days, and he has some great memories of those times together. Once he turned professional, Craddock turned to his current coach, Jim Miller. “He’s been my coach for almost my entire career since turning professional and entering the World Tour. He’s someone that I have a really strong relationship with and work really with. I definitely owe a lot of my career and my success to Jim,” he said.

As Craddock heads in to Nationals and looks to defend his title, he will do so as a member of a new team. “For six years I raced for an American team and last year it was quite evident that it was time for me to move on and find a new chapter of my career and fortunately I was able to connect with Team Bike Exchange – Jayco,” Craddock shared.

After speaking to their team manager and director, Craddock felt that the Australian based squad would be a great fit for him, and it has worked out well for the American rider to this point. “It all came together pretty naturally toward the end of the season last year and I feel very fortunate to be a member of the team. It’s a team that’s had a lot of success in the past as well as a great culture and great riders and staff. I found it very easy to fit in and be myself and actually be in a place and on a team that believes in me. I’m very fortunate to be here,” Craddock said.

While the current season has had its ebbs and flows as most cycling seasons do, Craddock is pleased with he and the team’s successful moments to this point.” It’s always a bit of a roller coaster. We’ve had really great moments, been part of some big victories and I’m recently coming off the Giro d’Italia and we won three stages there, which was pretty spectacular,” Craddock said. “We kind of came in with different goals that didn’t pan out, but to walk away with the success we had was pretty special. It was definitely a big race, and any time you can have that kind of success, it’s pretty special.”

Craddock is now back in the United States and has turned his focus to preparing for the upcoming National Championships where he will not only look to defend his time trial title but will also compete in the road race.

Craddock admits that returning as the reigning champion adds a bit of pressure, but he is up for the challenge. Yet he isn’t overlooking the road race as he finalizes his preparation for Knoxville. “It was a big goal of mine to come back this year and repeat and win the time trial again. It’s definitely remained a big focus of mine all season,” Craddock shared. “I know exactly what it takes to walk away with the jersey and I’m hoping to repeat. That being said, there’s also another big race and that’s the road race and I’d also like to have a good day in that as well.”

He and his coach have been working on preparation for both while also looking to ensure that he has a chance to recover from a busy season. “To be honest, [the time trial and the road race] kind of go hand and hand a little bit. I’m working closely with my coach to figure out the best plan of recovery from the Giro, which finished at the end of May and also fine tuning the form going into Nationals. The time trial will definitely be spinning a couple times a week on the time trial bike which is a completely different bike than our road bikes. It’s more geared toward aero dynamics and speed as opposed to the road bike which is built for more of an all-around aspect,” said Craddock.

Craddock will open competition at the 2022 USA Cycling Professional Road National Championships in Knoxville, Tenn., on Thursday, June 23 in the Elite Men’s Individual Time Trial before racing in the Elite Men’s Road Race on Sunday, June 26.