Joe Eldridge | Team Novo Nordisk | Ambassador
Hometown: Johns Creek, Georgia, United States
Age of diagnosis: 10
Position: Ambassador
"“I don’t let diabetes hold me back, and I don’t use it as an excuse for anything.”"

As a co-founder of Team Novo Nordisk’s predecessor, Team Type 1, Joe Eldridge brings inspiring cycling and ambassador experience to Team Novo Nordisk. A former U.S. track national champion (team pursuit, 2012), Eldridge’s cycling resume is rooted in criterium sprints and single-day classics. After his retirement from pro cycling in 2014, Eldridge dedicated his time to serving as a TNN Ambassador and inspiring others with his personal racing and diabetes story.

Since childhood, Eldridge dreamed of being a pro athlete. His father encouraged him to play sports, but Eldridge never anticipated it would be cycling. Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 10, he played several high school sports at the top level and only rode a bike as a way to manage his diabetes. While at Auburn University, he started riding with a group of cyclists, and riding quickly led to racing. One day at a race, Eldridge met Phil Southerland — the only other cyclist with diabetes Eldridge had ever encountered — and they quickly built a close friendship. Eldridge and Southerland went on to found Team Type 1, and together, created a platform for other endurance athletes with diabetes to develop and compete.

For Eldridge, his career was about much more than just racing a bike. He finds great value in showing people that athletes with diabetes can compete at the top level of their sports. Off the bike, Eldridge enjoys fishing and hiking. In addition to his diabetes outreach work, Eldridge also owns a real estate development company and a contracting company. He is married and has two sons and one rescue dog.


Personal story: I was diagnosed with diabetes when I was ten years old. I went on to lead a normal childhood managing my diabetes, playing sport at the top level and not letting diabetes prevent me from doing anything. When I was attending college, diabetes management was not very high on my priority list. It was at this time that I found bicycle racing and met fellow type 1 Phil Southerland. Cycling pointed my life with diabetes in the right direction. I put diabetes management back at the top of my priority list and we then created Team Type 1. The rest is history!

Message to people with diabetes: If you can manage your diabetes then you can manage anything in life. Diabetes does not have to hold you back if you have a good strategy.

Life dream: Have a healthy and loving family and group of friends.