Team DSM’s young British star following in his brother’s footsteps


Another Hayter? You’ve got it. The younger brother of Ethan, Leo currently rides for Team DSM’s developmen­t squad. Just like his sibling, he is proving to be a bit of an all-rounder so far, winning races across different discipline­s. The 20-year old from South London has one more year left with the German squad, where he has been since the beginning of 2020.

Let me guess, he was part of the Herne Hill set up.

Indeed. Just like Ethan, Fred Wright and Thomas Gloag among others, Leo got into cycling through the Herne Hill Velodrome holiday clubs and VC Londres, the south London cycling club.

What has he done so far?

Quite a lot. The end of 2021 was his real breakout, with wins coming in Liège-BastogneLi­ège U23, a stage of the Tour de Bretagne Cycliste, and winning the under-23 ITT title at the British nationals. His highlight of the year, however, was racing with WorldTour profession­als at the Tour of Norway, which he says was a turning point: “I really enjoyed it, it’s a really different dynamic from under-23 racing. It’s a lot more controlled; it feels safer.”

How is he finding DSM?

Leo told Procycling: “In general it has been pretty good. I’ve had lots of race opportunit­ies and they have been patient with helping me at the things I struggle with. Like, I’m not the best descender and one year in Calpe we had a downhill guy come in and show me the ropes.”

What kind of rider is he?

He doesn’t really know yet. But in his own words: “In general, moving towards a kind of GC specialist. I can climb and time trial well.

As a junior I did quite well in classics races too, but next year I think we will find out which path I’ll go down.”

What’s next?

He still has two more years at under-23 level, and he’ll be looking to target the Baby Giro, the World Championsh­ips and the Tour de l’Avenir in 2022. Time is on his side, and he knows this: “There is no real pressure on me, so I want to take advantage of that. Push my boundaries a bit.”

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