For Emma Pooley, signing for Cervélo in 2009 will mean a number of things: a step up in terms of the squad, her first professional salary and as she puts it ?I?ll be able to sleep more, too!?

?For the first time since I?ve been racing I?ll be receiving a wage and that?ll make a huge difference, too,? Pooley – who like so many pros in women?s cycling previously raced unpaid – tells Cycling Weekly.

?I?ve had [GB] Lottery funding this year, but this is the first professional salary I?ll be getting.?

The timing of Pooley?s two year contract with Cervélo could hardly have been better: Pooley?s funding for her PhD in soil engineering in Zurich runs out at the end of January 2009. She?ll continue doing the work necessary to complete her thesis in her free time, but will be able to focus better on racing as well.

?I won?t have much more time in general, but it means I?ll be able to dedicate more time to sleeping and recovery, which is what I was missing out on with my Ph.D.

?I was getting very tired sometimes from having to juggle my studying and racing. I would be going to training camps and stage races exhausted and coming away feeling more recovered, not the other way round! They’ve been very understanding in my work when it comes to my racing but there were times when it was hard fitting everything into place.”

?My coach would tell me I?d got the training program right, it was just a question of recovering better. That wasn?t possible when I was up half the night writing papers for my research.?

The agreement with Cervélo came about in September, after it became clear that her current team, Specialized, would fold at the end of the season.

?I had no complaints about this squad, but once I knew Specialized were going, I signed with Cervélo.?

?It?s a team I?ve come across in the past a fair bit at races, and which I?ve always liked in terms of their set-up.

?For me signing for them is a step up in the right direction.?

Signing for two years was something Pooley views as ideal, too, because, ?It?ll give me time to settle in and start building up relationships inside the team. That?s great news.?

RELATED LINKS
Pooley signs for Cervelo-Lifeforce
Monday’s international news round-up
Monday’s British news round-up
Pooley: ‘The biggest win of my career’
The Big Interview: Emma Pooley