It has been a long time since my last blog, so I’m hoping that a recap of the year so far may be of some interest.
I was due to return to Australia in September but due to Covid restrictions, I didn’t have the chance to return home till the start of December. I was so keen to go home, to see my family and my dogs! I spent Christmas with my family and spent a week in Bright, the high country of Victoria with my boyfriend and friends. The six weeks at home gave me a chance to relax and reset. My first race for the year was the National Championships, which are held in January in Australia. It’s not the ideal time in terms of being in peak condition as its during my pre-season period. However, I don think there would be many cyclists that aren’t keen to put in a good ride at their Nationals. Womens U23 and elite race together so there is always a strong and motivated field at the start line. I managed to place in the both the criterium, and the road race in U23. I gave it all I had on the day but I have to admit, I was slightly disappointed to finish one short in the road race. However, I am happy with my second place in the crit as I’m not really physically suited to that style of event.
I flew out to Europe the night of the Nationals Road race straight to Mallorca for a two-week team training camp; then Girona for a week or so, and then back for another training camp in Valencia. My European season started with the tour of Valencia. Upon returning home, Covid caught up with me and I was unwell for a few days. It took a week or so after getting back on the bike to feel relatively normal, so I was lucky to recover quickly. My next event, Nokere Koerse, ended prematurely with a crash at around the 40k mark. My head took the brunt of the impact, and with a broken helmet and headache, I knew pretty quickly that I had sustained a concussion. Having experienced a significant concussion 3 years ago, I understand that symptoms and recovery can vary from person-to-person. Luckily it was mild and I experienced headaches for a week or so, and was then able to return to training. Unfortunately as a consequence, I missed racing Trofeo Binda which was a race I was really keen to do. Between covid and my head, it was a month or so that required patience as I built my training and fitness level back up.
My race program then took me to Brabantse de Pijl, Elsy Jacobs, and Itzulia. Durango Durango was my first top 10 for the season, and with my teammate winning, it was a great day out. The Mont Ventoux challenge came next, followed by Tour de Suisse, both events with hilly terrain which is what I prefer. My team mates have performed well in a number of races this season and it’s great to feel like I’ve contributed in some way to the success!
In my second year as a professional cyclist, I’m more confident in the bunch now and not as daunted by the number of riders. I still have a lot to learn and know that there’s plenty of room for improvement, but I can honestly say that I am working in my dream job!
Thanks for reading!
Until next time,