Keira McVitty on recovering from illness, YouTube and why cycling is a sport that keeps on giving
It’s a sunny day just perfect for cycling – as YouTuber Keira McVitty puts on her cleats in the SKODA KAMIQ and tells us excitedly about her hopes for women’s cycling this year.
That’s because the first ever Tour de France Femmes could herald a new generation of women getting into the sport. And while the former pro’s goal is to “encourage everyone to try getting on a bike”, it’s also about “elevating the profile of women in cycling”.
Being born into the 4th generation of racing cyclists in her family, it’s unsurprising that bikes are in her DNA. But Keira has forged her own path too – helping in whatever way she can to make becoming a household name and gaining a fanbase that bit more achievable for all.
“It’s one of the things that’s harder with women’s cycling,” she explains. “Because the riders aren’t known, how can you know their story and fall in love with these riders?”
Being given the opportunity to go pro at a young age, Keira thought she finally had the chance to make that impact herself. But in 2017 being told she had anaemia was a real blow – meaning she would be unable to compete as before.
Only this cloud had a silver lining. Keira had started a YouTube channel years before and with more time on her hands, was able to discover endless opportunities to enjoy cycling in new ways and share that with others too.
“Cycling caused all these terrible things to happen to me but it also then saved me from all these terrible things,” she smiles. “Now my relationship with cycling is the best it’s ever been.”
Keira’s popular channel allowed her to become involved with the SKODA DSI Cycling Academy, headed up by Olympic athlete Dame Sarah Storey. The Academy helps young women in cycling to succeed, something Keira relishes.
Another highlight saw her being a standout social media star at the Tour de France last year – “Capturing the circus of this event!” – and seeing first hand the 250 service cars SKODA supplies to power the world’s biggest celebration of cycling.
On the SKODA KAMIQ she’s sat in today, she says: “I’m a massive fan of the virtual cockpit. It’s got a really clear view and a 9.2″ touchscreen that you can connect all your devices to. Handy for gadgets like GPS computers and smartphones.”
All wrapped up in the form of a compact SUV, the KAMIQ is perfect for Keira’s road trips with friends – and heading off for rides just about anywhere.
It all goes to show, when one door closes another much better one can always be opened – and who knows where you’ll go next.
This article was brought to you in partnership with SKODA.