Joanna Rowsell-Shand

Joanna Rowsell-Shand

Joanna began competitive cycling relatively late – aged 16 – having been talent spotted at school aged 15. She wasn’t a cyclist at all previously and having been talent spotted was faced with a steep learning curve into the world of cycling skills and tactics. Perseverance lead to junior National Titles and representing Great Britain at the junior World Championships in only her second year of racing.

Joanna grew up in London but after finishing her A Levels relocated to Manchester to be a full time cyclist and within 9 months won her first World Title in the women’s Team Pursuit. A series of setbacks throughout 2010 put her place on Team GB at a home Olympic Games in jeopardy as she subsequently suffered a bad year in 2011, but battled back to become World Champion, World Record holder and Olympic Champion in 2012.

After the London Olympics, Joanna focussed more on individual events and in 2014 completed the World Championships and Commonwealth Games double with gold medals at both events in the Individual Pursuit that year.

Joanna made Team GB again in 2016 for the Rio Olympics but this time they went in as the underdogs having not won the World Title that year. However, the team blew the competition away to take a gold medal again and 3 new World Records in the process.

Joanna has suffered with alopecia, resulting in hair loss, since she was 10 years old which has brought with it many challenges to overcome as she grew up.


Joanna is an accomplished public speaker and speaks passionately about her career, the setbacks she has faced and how she has overcome them. She can focus her talk around sporting themes as well as around the more personal topic of alopecia and how she has overcome body confidence issues. Working with the BBC in Rio after she finished racing, Joanna received great praise via social media from many people enjoying her warming presence on camera and insight into the racing mindset.

Joanna can tailor her talk to the audience as necessary and can speak passionately on the following topics:

What it takes to win
Overcoming adversity
Dealing with nerves and pressure
Team work
Body confidence
Marginal gains

As a speaker, Joanna has the unique ability to inspire confidence, courage, and hope in people and learn about goal-setting, leadership, focus, self-motivation and commitment. If you are interested in booking Joanna for your event or conference, please contact a Prime Performers Booking Agent on 020 7251 8222 to discuss your requirements.