Matt Clark has thought about being a professional cyclist every day since he took up the sport as an eight-year-old in 2000.
“And I had the dreams of winning the Tour de France all the way back then,” he said.
“I used to dream of calling myself a professional cyclist, look, I wouldn’t put myself in that league at the moment.
“I’ve certainly had plenty of up and downs, like breakout performances and people, all of a sudden, labelling you as the next big thing.
“Having a professional contract waved under your nose, and then at the last minute snatched away for reasons you don’t even understand, or haven’t had explained, it certainly does give you a kick in the guts to come so close and have that taken away.”
Clark did ride for Avanti in 2014-15, but his next, and potentially last crack at a pro career, could depend on whether he gains a start in next month’s Herald Sun Tour, which travels through Beechworth.