• Matt Goss will wave farewell to professional cycling in Launceston. (Getty)Source: Getty
Matt Goss admits he knows little else outside of a cycling career he has just called time on but sounds like an eager job applicant when he talks about what’s next.
By
Sophie Smith

15 Sep 2016 - 7:51 AM 

The 29-year-old has been a bike racer since childhood and is now for the first time considering options outside of the sport, which has almost exclusively occupied his life until now.

Goss last week announced his retirement through a team press release and has one more race, an adieu at November’s Launceston Criterium, to compete at before he stores the cleats for good.

“By the time you get to the point where you put the press release out it’s more I’m excited now as to what comes next,” Goss told Cycling Central from his Europe base in Monaco. “When you first make that decision it’s always a little bit scary I guess in some ways – you don’t know anything else.

“I’ve done this since I was 12 or 13 years old. I’ve been a professional basically my whole adult life since about 19, 20, and I raced at world championship level with Australia before that.”

Goss travelled to England for the final of the Tour of Britain on the weekend where his current team, One Pro, presented him with a parting gift – an inscribed bottle of Dom Perignon.

Some say once you’re in cycling you never leave, and the WorldTour circuit is evidence of that – bike riders becoming sports directors, then sporting managers, general managers and so forth.

However, Goss has expressed interest in a more business-minded future as he prepares to take a month out to consider all his options, including geography and moving his young family to a place with bigger backyards than Monaco.

“While I haven’t ever done any other degrees, or spent time at school, or done any studies while I’ve been racing, I’m confident I’ve learnt a lot from the sport, which I can then use in whatever comes next,” he said.

“I’ve got too much knowledge and experience in this sport to not be involved with it. It would be a shame not to use that, so I would like to stay somewhat involved, it just depends on finding the right role and moving forward from there,” he continued.

“I do want to do something where I can use my brain in a different way. I’m not going to say you don’t use your brain in cycling, you certainly do, to know what to do, how to do it, when to do it, but there’s a lot more in a business type world out there where you can expand your knowledge.

“I want to be able to really help with working within a team, working in the management side, stuff like that is a bit more exciting to me.”

Goss on previous teams was the young rider that identified more with an older generation, which is maybe why when it came to racing he was a hard man, or, in his own words, an Aussie fighter that could deliver in cycling’s toughest tests. 

“I was never the strongest guy in a lot of the races I won but I managed to suffer through to the finish and in a condition to win those,” he said.

The Tasmanian retires with a palmares which includes victory as an underdog at the 2011 Milan-San Remo, silver at the 2011 UCI Road World Championships, a berth at the London 2012 Olympic Games road race and two Giro d’Italia stage wins.

Goss inadvertently hints that he has known for a while his debut season with One Pro would be the last of his career.

His 2016 season has been hampered by bouts of tendonitis and in his official retirement statement, he also attributed a lack of results to losing his passion for racing.

“I’ve spent the last couple of months with tendonitis in my knee. I don’t where these have come from, random things that have popped up that I haven’t had my entire career, I’ve never had tendonitis in my knee,” he said.

“I knew it was going to be my last year so I didn’t want to take a big extended break to let it recover because I would have missed most of the racing.  I was trying to rest it enough, train enough to do each race. It just hasn’t gone away.”

Goss is still monitoring the niggling injury and plans to get back on his bike and be fit enough to race at his ‘home’ criterium later this year.

He doesn’t know what the future holds after that but is speaking again with the same fighting fervour that made him a celebrated and decorated Australian professional.

“I don’t know what else I’m good at, really,” he laughs. “I’ve done this my whole life, it’s basically all I’ve done, but you learn a lot of skills as a bike rider, you know, it’s not all just about how to turn the pedals over faster than the other guys.

 “It really just is sitting down maybe in another month or so and looking at what’s in front of me, making a decision then. I don’t want to rush into anything. Like I said, I’ve been doing this for 10 years, I went straight from school to Europe and I’ve not really had any downtime in my adult life. If it takes me a month to find out what comes next, I’ll take that month.”

"Like I said, I’ve been doing this for 10 years, I went straight from school to Europe and I’ve not really had any downtime in my adult life. If it takes me a month to find out what comes next, I’ll take that month.”