I have always been very passionate about sport, and very competitive. I started racing BMX at the age of 3 in the under 5 boy’s category. Although I competed in a large number of other sports at national level during my school years, my number one passion was BMX racing.
Not only did I compete in many sports, I trained for them. From the age of 5 to 15yrs I trained everyday of the week before and/or after school. In my younger years I was a gymnast at national level, and then I started little athletics and enjoyed the middle to longer distances. Outside of school, sports like touch football, softball etc… I was soon training for athletics, cross country running, swimming, surf lifesaving, tennis, netball and BMX.
At the age of 13 I decided to drop many sports to concentrate on Surf Lifesaving and BMX – I trained everyday of the week and was competing nationally and internationally.
It was at this point that I developed a burning desire to represent Australia and become a professional athlete and an Olympian. In order to do this I needed to decide on a sport and specialise. Neither Surf Lifesaving nor BMX were Olympic sports at the time.
I had been identified by a talent ID program for having potential talent as a cyclist and I was being tracked down by a local academy of sport cycling coach – Mitch Law. Within 3 weeks Mitch had coached me to a NSW championship and within 3 months I was the U15 National Champion.
As a junior cyclist I focused on the track (velodrome) and won a number of junior National Championships and a World Championship Silver medal. I went on to win senior/elite World Cups and two World Championship silver medals on the track, and also won two silver medals at the 2002 and 2006 Commonwealth Games before turning my focus to road cycling.
I am now a professional Road Cyclist. I have won a World Cup and claimed many World Cup podiums as a professional cyclist; my greatest achievements also include stage wins in the Giro d’Italia and Route De France. In cycling terms I am just entering my strongest years in this sport. At 28 years of age, I am chasing the ultimate goals of Commonwealth, World and Olympic gold medals!
I come from a large family – my parents Delwyn and Leslie were from Sth Sydney and are both now remarried. Before Leslie and Delwyn met, Leslie had a child, Sharon, born in 1971 (my half sister). Delwyn and Leslie had 3 children; Warren born in 1979, David born in 1980 and myself born in 1981. Leslie now lives in Tweed Heads with his wife (Robyn) and two young children – Lauren born in 2002 and Ryan born in 2008 (my half brother and sister). Delwyn is now remarried to David Dicker, my stepfather who has played a very supportive role in my life and career as a business women and athlete. (my mother and stepfather now reside in Dubai)
I lived with my grandparents for a number of years and became very close to my late Grandma (I still stays with my Grandpa when I am in Australia). I moved out of home at the age of 15yrs and grew up very quickly finding my own way in life while remaining close to my family, especially my mother who is my biggest supporter and best friend.
Whilst my two older brothers and sister live in Sydney where I’m based every Australia summer I still manage to squeeze in a visit to Tweed Heads each year to see my natural father, stepmother and younger brother and sister. It’s fair to say the large family remain close at heart!
In order to travel to Europe to compete as an elite cyclist at the age of 15 yrs, I left school and continued my studies by correspondence. I have studied Sports Journalism, Sports Science, Fitness and Advanced Resistance Training, Sports Massage, Business and the Italian Language. I now speak fluent Italian. I currently manage two cycling teams (Lotto Ladies Team and the Honda Dream Team), I own a cycling clothing label (rmgsport.com) and compete as a professional athlete.
In 2006 I settled into my Italian home in the Italian dolomites and spent a year renovating the interior to suit my style and comfort. I feel at home in my Northern Italian home – in the heart of the dolomites.
I really enjoy quiet time home alone in between racing tours. I live a very busy life on the road – literally, I would be lucky to get 30 days at home in one year! This has been my lifestyle for the past 10 years.
If I want to forget about cycling or business for a few hours I will look for an extreme sporting activity – I have recently found a passion for racing cars around a track, it became an addiction during this past Australian summer and is something I will try to fit into my schedule regularly this coming Australian summer.
I like to work on my own bike, or closely watch my mechanic work. I have all the tools I could possibly need to build a bike, set up a bike or to change bottom bracket and wheel bearings. I bet my personal tool box and spares box is more complete than most women’s pro teams would have! I am passionate about working on my bikes and thoroughly enjoy it! I guess I get that from my brothers and step father who are seriously into motorsports – where their vehicles’ performance is as equally as important as their physical performance.