What do I feel? The first thing I feel is strong and determined. Whilst I’ve lost a lot of aggression over the years on the bike, I do feel very aggressive and ambitious in life. I work so hard to achieve my goals and never give up on anything or anyone. That’s exactly what I see in that picture. I feel…. “Ahhhh ‘it’s 2013, let’s do this!”
2013 has been amazing so far, I’m blessed. People say I’m lucky and that comment makes me smile. Anyone around me will tell you it’s not luck. I have a goal, a plan and a strategy for everything and I believe in it, then I make it happen.
Everyone who has worked with me during the past 4 years knows that I all wanted was a women’s professional cycling team where the athletes would be treated like professionals. That’s easy said but by no means as easy to do. Yes, I’ve learnt a lot about ‘why’ it’s so difficult in women’s cycling to do that however, one race down and things are going well.
Our athletes were satisfied after their first race in Qatar – even though I made many mistakes regarding management, they were still taken care of very well by our staff and given every opportunity to compete at their best. Our staff members have been trained to put the athlete first and give them what they need in order to perform at their best, even if that’s just a bit of one on one time.
Of course I can not please everyone all the time but I think that the disappointment can be managed by explaining why I can’t sometimes do something.
After the Tour of Qatar, I had a 30 minute meeting with each athlete to ask what we as a team could do better, I think this is a very important process at the start of the season. It was nice to hear the athlete’s comment that it’s the most professional organisation that they’ve been a part of…. However I have also worked with athletes who don’t respond well to organisation and protocol so when I recognize that in an athlete – I need to ask them very casually, all ok?
So it’s early January and we haven’t won a race! Well that would have been a fairy tale beginning right?! Qatar was the first international UCI race of the year and we managed a podium in stage 3 with Bronzini and also 3rd on the team’s general classification, plus Kitchen finished top 10 on GC. I guess we would have liked and expected slightly better results on paper however, the way the team rode was extremely impressive. I’m sure the athletes gained respect from their competitors and demonstrated that Wiggle Honda mean business.
We’re all motivated for the challenges that lay ahead.