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Bobby & Jens: David Millar

The former pro talks about discovering cycling growing up in Hong Kong, his racing days, doping and more

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The first guest of the 2022 season of Bobby & Jens goes way back with co-host Bobby Julich. Being roommates with the only other English speaker on a French team when you’re a 19-year-old neo-pro will do that. Ever the fascinating character, Scottish cyclist David Millar joins the show this week. 

Learn how David got his start in cycling while growing up around the world, including Hong Kong for most of his formative years, in a military family. “The thing I loved when I was young was doing my own thing,” he says. And that meant a love of alternative sports, everything from skateboarding to, eventually, road biking. In fact, he used to get VeloNews at a newsstand in Hong Kong. “They used to be my bibles,” he says of the American publication. Although he’s the first to admit that cycling was something of an unconventional passion. “There’s no glamor,” he says. “There’s no celebrity. There’s relatively no money. You did it out of love. You did it out of adventure.”

As with any time Bobby and Jens have a guest on who they raced with and shared hotel rooms with, there are plenty of great stories shared on this episode, including one that’s indicative of how the sport has evolved with the latest generation. Plus there’s reminiscing between David, Bobby, and Jens about their time as the only English speakers on French teams, trailblazing for the riders who follow today.

Later, the discussion turns to David’s doping, which he has been very open about. After a two-year suspension and rehabilitation, he returned to become, in Bobby’s words, “one of the best road captains, the best teammates, the best advocates for clean sport that we’ve ever seen.”

“I was filled with shame that I gave in,” says David of his doping. Learn about his mindset during his suspension, and what motivated him to return to cycling when he was at one point ready to give it up. 

Finally, David shares the important distinction between hurting and suffering, and how it played into his decision to retire. He also touches on his post-retirement (from cycling at least) life, including his family and his CHPT3 clothing brand. 

Listen to this week’s episode for the full discussion.

“Bobby & Jens” is a weekly VeloNews podcast. It stars former pros Bobby Julich and Jens Voigt and features conversations with top athletes, coaches, emerging stars, and other newsmakers from the wide world of cycling. Subscribe now wherever you get your podcasts.

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