WIRRAL's two-time Tour de France stage winner Steve Cummings looks back on his career in a debut autobiography.

Steve - who retired from professional cycling in 2019 - will sign copies of The Break - life as a cycling maverick during an event at Linghams in Heswall a week on Saturday, June 4 at 2pm.

Published by Atlantic Books, it is described as a "gripping and revealing autobiography of one of Britain's most successful international cyclists of the modern era who, for nearly 20 years determinedly blazed his own winning trail in international cycling.

"A maverick who defied the dominant teams, to record a sequence of gloriously improbable victories, he has lived and raced with legends of the sport - Cavendish, Wiggins, Froome, Thomas and others - about whom he has strong views and untold stories."

Wirral Globe:

Front cover of Steve Cummings book 'The Break - life as a cycling maverick'

The autobiography of one of Britain's most successful international riders of the modern era takes the reader from Steve's earliest days as a junior, pounding across the flatlands of Wirral, through his love-hate relationships with the British Cycling track cycling squad, to his series of top-level breakaway victories in the Tour de France, Tour of Britain and Vuelta a España and - rather than standout physical talent - how developing his own strategies and training techniques enabled him to succeed against the odds.

The Break is the first full-length account of the life and times of, in the words of ProCycling magazine, a 'universally popular and respected rider in the cycling world'.

Steve (pictured, below) told the Globe today: "It's ironic, because I was never really a big reader before, I was just into cycling. So, I felt really privileged to have been given the opportunity to look back on my career and chart exactly what happened.

"It was a good opportunity to reflect on my career and life and was quite therapeutic."

Wirral Globe:

"I've got a selective memory and there are certain things you try not to think about, just focussing on the positives.

"The highlights, obviously, were the Tour de France wins. However, it's inevitable that you have to reflect on everything that you have done.

"It was difficult to articulate things at first, but I wanted to take ownership of the book and put it into my own words".

Steve said there has been a very positive response to the book, adding: "My friend read it the other day and said it was like sitting down with a cup of coffee and listening to me talk, which was a nice thing to say.

"We're going to do another book; nothing's been confirmed yet, but there is a lot more to look back on."

Looking back on his career, Steve reflected: "When I first started out 25 years ago, Chris Boardman was among those at the top of their game.

"I felt maybe I could make a living in cycling. Never imagined I was super-talented."

The 41-year-old endured an injury-hit final season with Team Dimension Data, which ended in unfortunate fashion when he crashed out of the Tour of Britain during stage five on his home turf around Wirral, suffering multiple broken vertebrae in the incident.

The former Team Sky rider won a stage of the Vuelta a Espana in 2012 but his most notable personal successes came late in his career.

In 2015, riding for the South African-registered team MTN-Qhubeka which would become Dimension Data, he took an emotional victory on stage 14 of the Tour de France to Mende on Nelson Mandela Day.

He collected his second Tour victory a year later on stage seven to Lac de Payolle and followed that up with overall victory in the Tour of Britain.

In 2017, he became a double British national champion with wins in the road race and time trial.

Tickets for Steve's booksigning event at Lingham's bookshop on Saturday, June 4 are from: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/linghams-steve-cummings-book-signing-the-break-life-as-a-cycling-maverick-tickets-345776656287