Hannah van Kampen's "other dads", Robert Oliver and Ivar Hopman, are beaming with pride as well after the Hastings rider claimed gold and silver medals in piloting Emma Foy to glory at the UCI Para Cycling Road World Championship in the Netherlands last weekend.

Van Kampen and stoker Foy, of Dargaville but also based in Cambridge, were crowned world champions in the women's BV1 road race on Sunday after taming the 81.4km race through tight technical corners and stretches of cobbles for a photo finish over Irish pair Katie-george Dunlevy and Eve McCrystal in 2h 07m 39s.

Paralympics New Zealand cycling head performance coach Stuart McDonald revealed on its Facebook site it was a nerve-racking wait to find out who had eventually prevailed.

But it didn't surprise those familiar with Foy and Van Kampen the steely resolve the Kiwis draw on when push comes to shove on the high-octane circuits.

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"When I was cycling I never got through talent so it was through sheer hard work," said Oliver from his Hub Cycle Centre business in Hastings. "I think, without being awful, she's done exactly the same because it's sheer hard work and perseverance that's got her there so she's got that in abundance."

The 26-year-old, who has been getting a feel for the Tokyo Paralympics track in Japan next year in the past few days and arrives with the Kiwi contingent in Auckland at 8.05am tomorrow, had overcome a cold last Sunday, according to mother Vanessa van Kampen.

"In New Zealand this didn't make the news, even alongside para-swimming, but in Holland they're like rock stars," Vanessa said. "Some people may be of the perception that para is the poorer relation but they are elite cyclists who do fast times and their training is brutal because I've seen them come off the track in Hamilton and they can hardly breathe."

Oliver endorsed Van Kampen's never-say-die attitude even when she was a competitive youngster who got the cycling fever as a teenager from kids' triathlons.

"She always gives you 120 per cent — it's never 100 per cent — so you can always be proud of what she's done when you know her background," said Oliver, who had mentored Van Kampen for almost a decade while she was under the tutelage of Hopman.

Munich Olympian Robert Oliver, owner of The Hub Cycle Centre, says Hannah van Kampen always left her fuel tank empty and that shows now on the world stage. Photo/file
Munich Olympian Robert Oliver, owner of The Hub Cycle Centre, says Hannah van Kampen always left her fuel tank empty and that shows now on the world stage. Photo/file

The 1972 Munich Olympics road cyclist cast his mind back to taking Van Kampen for "motor pace training" in Hastings when she was a Hawke's Bay Ramblers Cycling Club member.

"We used to duplicate racing so we used to take her out to a quiet road — if you can find one here — and got her up to racing speed to sprint so she had to combat a motorbike, not another human being."

Oliver said with his background the task was to instil some faith in her own ability.

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"Over time now she can almost tell me what to do," said the 70-year-old with a laugh, likening it to Regan Gough. "Their experience overtakes what you can gift to them so they become far better than what I ever was."

Oliver said it was becoming evident, especially in the past year, that Van Kampen and Foy had built a rapport, something that wasn't a given.

"We've just got to hope now we get a good run, like you do in any sport where when you get sick anything can happen over time so, if you have a bit of luck on your side and prepare correctly, they'll be doing their best."

For Foy and Van Kampen, feeling the effects of a cold that had hampered their training, it was a redemption of sorts. They had clocked 41m 57.79s to muster 104 points to finish behind stoker Dunlevy and her pilot, McCrystal (41:02.51), who had amassed 120 points for gold in the time-trial even on Friday. British stoker Lora Fachie and pilot Corrine Hall were third (42:11.54).

For the Van Kampen parents it is traditionally a sleepless night when their daughter's racing, when she's the eyes and Foy's the ears.

"Particularly for the road race as so much can go wrong because you're depending on all the cyclists around you and constantly reading the bunch and watching for moves," said Vanessa, highlighting the risks of crashes.

She and husband Paul van Kampen were accustomed to hearing the phone go off early for missions accomplished but delays leaving them twiddling their thumbs.

"So to receive a picture of the rainbow jersey when blurry eyed after being woken up, it then became impossible to sleep as we were so excited for the girls."

The van Kampen clan are Finn (left), Hannah, Oliver, Celia, Vanessa and Paul. Photo/supplied
The van Kampen clan are Finn (left), Hannah, Oliver, Celia, Vanessa and Paul. Photo/supplied

While the parents are former Ramblers riders (albeit not to the standard of Van Kampen or her brothers Finn and Oliver), they understood how difficult it was for Hannah to win a race with the demands of working in tandem with Foy.

"Many years ago I watched a young up-and-coming cyclist on the podium out at Puketapu and said imagine if your daughter was that good," the mother said. "I often laugh with Hannah about my thoughts that day as, of course, we do have a daughter who is now that good and some, and we are truly grateful of the excitement and opportunities that has created for us as Hannah's parents."

Paul, a hard materials technology teacher at Taikura Rudolf Steiner, had shared the joy with his pupils. Hannah is an old girl of the school and had gone on to win a club nationals crown with Hopman's coaching before she was approached to help para-cyclists.

Vanessa, who works from home in administration and finance, relishes Hannah's few days off riding when she visits Hastings.

"I am able ride to and from coffee shops — at a fast pace for me — although she tells me there will be no riding when she comes home this time," she said with a chuckle.

The Van Kampens had embarked on a three-week family cycling holiday — with some intrepidation — with Hannah in Sri Lanka last Christmas because of her training demands.

Visually impaired Foy and Van Kampen had won gold at the Para-cycling Track World Championship in the 3km individual pursuit event at Apeldoorn in the Netherlands in March this year.

Van Kampen had piloted Cambridge-based Amanda Cameron, of Auckland, at the Rio Olympics in 2016.

Vanessa said Para-cycling was an amazing initiative.

"I've certainly learned a lot and been inspired by the determination and ability of these elite athletes so very much hoping to get to watch them in Tokyo next year," she said, echoing the sentiments of Robert Oliver.

Pilot rider Hannah van Kampen and stoker Emma Foy show the chemistry that yielded gold for the Kiwi pair at the UCI Para Cycling Road World Championship last weekend. Photo/Photosport
Pilot rider Hannah van Kampen and stoker Emma Foy show the chemistry that yielded gold for the Kiwi pair at the UCI Para Cycling Road World Championship last weekend. Photo/Photosport