Every time Vic Barnett races, there is one particular person who is behind him being there. His wife, Ann Barnett.
Ann is responsible for everything other than riding in the race, as her husband Vic explained:
“I’ve always said that I have the best deal. Ann does everything for me, she’s the team manager and my biggest supporter really.”
Having got married back in 1966, Ann has been by Vic’s side since he burst onto the world masters scene back in the early 2000s, travelling all over the word together in that time, as Ann herself explained:
“I sort out all the travel arrangements, wash his clothes, ensure he has enough food to perform well and that he’s signed on to start the race. We have been to every corner of the world together, it has been a fantastic journey.”
Not only does Ann ensure Vic is ready to ride, she even helps him out during the race:
“When he’s racing I stand in the pit area with a spare bike incase he needs to change halfway through, because most of the time it gets really muddy out on the course.” She added.
Their son Dean Barnett, who used to ride semi-professionally, also described how vital Ann is to Vic’s success:
“If anything it’s just as much Ann’s medal as it is Vic’s, she does so much for him, and I know she will hate me saying that but it’s true. She even has to get him to the start line on time sometimes! They really are a perfect double act.”
Vic is hopeful to be able to compete next year providing his knee surgery goes well, but admits it could be tough to stay motivated knowing he’ll be off the bike for a while, but that’s where Ann again is massively supporting.
“I know these next few months are going to be really difficult for us both with me in and out of hospital, but Ann will be there to motivate me to stay focused on my next target. She’s fantastic at that, no matter how hard it gets whenever I’m riding I know she’ll be there supporting me, which during a race is a humungous psychological boost.”