January 04, 2023
We asked Lachlan Morton if we could interview him while he was in London for Rouleur Live. Sure, he said. And could we do it over high tea? James Startt got the company credit card out for tea, cakes and champagne.
There are few true iconoclasts in the world today. But when it comes to cycling, Lachlan Morton is undeniably one of them. After years as a WorldTour-level road racer, Morton has embraced the world of gravel and ultra endurance riding, and in doing so, has redefined what it means to be a professional. Needless to say, we were surprised to find that afternoon tea was one of the Australian’s priorities when visiting London for the Rouleur Live event. After all, Morton can go for days and weeks without a home-cooked meal on his many bike-packing adventures. But then the 30-year-old never ceases to surprise. And it proved to be a perfect place to catch up.
Relaxing in Gatsby’s Room at The Beaumont in the heart of West London, Morton enjoyed traditional sandwiches like Devilled Egg and Coronation Chicken, but also the less-common Salt Beef Reuben. And when the two attacked the classic scones with Cornish clotted cream and strawberry preserves, they knew they had reached high-tea nirvana. And then there were the pastries, with the Yuzu cream pie and Mocha cake receiving particularly high marks.
I have to say that high tea was not something I expected to be up there on your priorities when visiting London.
Probably not, but it is just something that has always been on my bucket list of things to do. I am glad to finally have the chance!
It’s interesting to see how you have become such an iconoclastic figure in the sport. You started out as a traditional road cyclist, but you have now become one of the leading forces in the gravel and ultra scene. Obviously you have a big engine. You won a lot of big races coming up through the ranks as a junior and beyond. Obviously you have the physical makeup to be a professional roadie, but you have chosen otherwise…
I think I just didn’t have the head, in good ways and bad ways. I just couldn’t go to those places you need to go to in your head to do the WorldTour thing. I didn’t have the focus. The level is so high. The teams all ride the…