THE ascent of Joe Nally in the past 12 months has been nothing short of remarkable. Earlier this year, aged 17, he became the youngest winner of the British Senior Points Race Champion – a result that came as a complete shock to him. And just a couple of months ago he was invited to join British Cycling’s senior academy in Manchester – dubbed the “medal factory”, such is its success in churning out winners.

Nally’s rise to prominence means he goes into today’s Revolution Champions League at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow as one of Scotland’s brightest young prospects and, with so few chances to race on home soil, he cannot wait.

“I’m really excited about it – this will be my second elite Rev after racing in Manchester last year so to be at home in Glasgow, in front of the home crowd, will be brilliant,” said the 18-year-old. “I don’t do many races at home any more so this is one of the few opportunities to race at a high level in Scotland, which is great.

“I might get the chance to wear the British Champion’s jersey which is pretty cool – I’ve worn it once this year but the race didn’t go very well, so hopefully I can rectify that.”

Despite becoming British champion, Nally, who hails from Dunfermline, admits 2017 has been somewhat up and down for him.

“It’s been quite a strange year – a lot of the targets I set for myself, I didn’t reach but then I achieved quite a few things that I never expected to,” he said. “I was hoping for an international result on the road but it’s never really came, which was disappointing, but then I wasn’t expected to do as well on the track as I did so it was a bit of a confusing year, but definitely a good one overall.

“It was really frustrating to get ill because obviously I was in good form, and really looking forward to tackling the classics season on the road but, by the time I started to feel good again, that part of the season was over.

“After that, I lost my motivation a bit and that was tricky because when you lose it, it’s pretty hard to get it back so it was a bit of a slog. But whenever I had a bad race on the road, I just told myself that I had the track season to look forward to so that’s what kept me going.”

Nally’s move to Manchester at the start of October is an opportunity to be a part of one of the most successful training programmes in the world. And the teenager is now mixing it daily with world and Olympic champions, which he admits took a bit of getting used to.

“It’s full on and it’s not easy but it’s been great and I’ve really enjoyed it,” he said. “There are some really big names who have been a part of this academy. I suppose there is no reason that couldn’t be me in a few years. I don’t really feel any pressure from that – not at the moment anyway – because it’s a little bit early for me to start worrying about that yet.”

Nally’s steadily improving results mean the expectation on his shoulders is increasing exponentially. Pressure is not something he had previously handled well but he is optimistic that, as he gains experience, he will also become more comfortable being classed as a race favourite.

“So far, there’s not been too much pressure on me but I think once we start racing again, that will all come,” he said.

Nally will be in exalted company at today’s Revolution Champions League. There are a number of World and Olympic medallists on show, including three-time Olympic team pursuit champion Ed Clancy, world champion on road and track Lizzie Deignan, Rio 2016 Olympic champion Elinor Barker and world and Olympic champion Dani Rowe.

Some of Scotland’s top talent will also be on show, with Neah Evans one of the best chances of a Scots win, while youngsters Lewis Stewart, Jenny Holl and Rhona Callander will be in action as they aim to gain further experience in the senior ranks.