The 2012 NEBC Women’s 2/3/4 Road Development Team is excited about the upcoming racing season and what it will bring to us – and our competition! We want to race, and we want to race with the enthusiasm and competitive spirit that NEBC, with its long tradition of women’s racing, have always done. I’m new to NEBC and am looking forward to seeing these dedicated athletes develop throughout the season, and the spirit they most definitely will show, as they race in and around New England.
There are many of you who plan on racing this year and I wanted to let you know the targeted races for the Women’s Development Team. My hope is that if you’re wondering what races to do, do these! You’ll have the camaraderie and support of your teammates. Does it get any better?
- April 15th – Myles Standish
- May 5th and 6th – Bennington Stage Race
- May 12th – Sterling Road Race
- June 9th – Nutmet Crit
- June 10th – Purgatory Road Race
- June 28th – July 1st – Longsjo
- July 8th – New Britain Crit
- July 29th – Norwell Circuit Race
- Aug. 4th – Concord Crit
Going through last year’s race reports, it’s easy to see how the women in this year’s development team have adopted the spirit of competition and camaraderie bike racing can foster. In addition to their own racing, the goals of the 2012 Women’s Development Team include a focus on advocacy for women racing. So, they’re not only racing and training, they’re dedicated to creating an even stronger and more positive environment for all women who want to race.
As way of introducing you to the Development Team, I’d like to share some of the highlights I learned from reading last year’s race reports. It was wonderful to read…
- How, during the Attleboro Criterium, Katherine Snell sat at the front, putting the hurt on, which gave Jackie Zider the opportunity to win the women’s Cat. 3,4 race.
- How, during the New Britain Criterium, Julianne and Elizabeth Cummings, with Elizabeth working hard and steady to move up to the front, helped Jackie Zider get on the podium and supported Julianne to finish in the money.
- How Julianne and Lisa Ludwig set course records for the George St. Challenge at an 18% climb.
- How Jackie (again!) won the Norwell Circuit Race by getting in a break with a few others. She didn’t want to sit on her competitor’s wheel, but didn’t want to ‘give’ them a wheel either – beautiful. And Cathy Rowell, whose legs were already chewed up from riding a Fondo the day before, still managed to control the race and support her teammates.
Let’s see what 2012 brings! Below are the members of this year’s Women’s 2/3/4 Road Development Team:
I got my first bike when I was 5. Sometime between 5 and 7, the training wheels came off. At 10, some neighborhood kids in Mississippi taught me how to ride an oversized 10-speed by barrelling me down the street then letting go. I was too afraid that if I braked I would topple over, so I whirled around the block countless times. At 19, I started riding in the Boston area with a late 60′s Purple Schwinn Hollywood cruiser (which I still own). Then I ventured 3 years as a bike courier and kept riding everywhere after that. I didn’t start racing until I was 35, and well, here I am on NEBC Women’s Development team. I’ll be riding around for at least another 35 years.
I first caught the racing bug when I picked up my new bike from one of my friends at a race she was doing. I thought to myself “maybe I’ll try that some day”. A year and a thousand miles later and twenty pounds lighter, I decided to take the plunge and joined NEBC in 2008 with the intent of doing a few time trials and met the inspirational Julie Lockhart who lived just across the state line from me. Pretty soon I was doing the Intro to Racing clinic and thinking about doing a road race. When I asked one of the elite team women, Sally Annis whether I should do a race before the clinic was over, she said “Why not? Racing is just riding with a number on your back”. I was dropped on the first climb but time trialed and finished the race in 5th place and was hooked. I’ve since gone on to upgrade to Cat 3, Women’s Cat 3/4 team captain, NEBC board member and race promoter and still love this sport as much as that first day.
I started cycling in 2010 through the encouragement of a few friends, and was quickly hooked–so hooked that I even agreed to race in a challenging road race at the end of the summer. That race was the craziest, hardest bike ride I had ever done and afterwards, I knew that all I wanted to do was improve and try more races in 2011. I joined NEBC in early 2011 and completed a number of road races and also dabbled in ‘cross. For 2012, I am looking forward to focusing on technical skill development and bringing my riding to the next level.
While I got my first road bike when I was 16 (oh how I loved that Lemond Buenos Aires!!), I didn’t start riding competitively until after I graduated from college and was looking for a way to stay in shape. I started with triathlons, but after a few too many 70.3s that showed me just how terrible of a swimmer and runner I was, I decided to focus on the sport I was least bad at. I loved the transition to road cycling because it reminded me of the part I liked best about rowing (what I did in college) — working out and racing with a team. I chose NEBC because I heard it was the best team for women’s cycling in New England and I have not been disappointed. The support on and off the road is tremendous and some of my fellow teammates even convinced me to try a ‘cross race last year (I nearly died!!). I’m excited about the 2012 season and look forward to taking my climbing skills and sprinting speed to the next level!
Racing with NEBC since 2007, I chose Cyclocross as my ticket into the world of bike racing. The grass seemed like a softer landing if I went down, and it was! In 2010 I got bored waiting for the ‘cross season and tried a few races on my road bike I bought with no intention of ever racing it… I was surprised at how fun it was! In 2011 I did my first full season with the newly formed NEBC Women’s Development Team. We had a great time and I’m excited to be a part of the program for the 2012 season. Little known facts: I have a fear of lightening storms and getting stuck out on the bike in one. I have a love-hate relationship with climbing. My greatest downfall is my love of baked goods… specifically cupcakes, chocolate chip cookies, and the newly discovered wrapple. Off the bike I’m a Family Nurse Practitioner and Refugee Primary Care Provider in Worcester, MA.
Riding and racing is my longest adult relationship. And, like any long term relationship we’ve learned how to communicate with each other. For me, working with people who are newer to the sport inspires me again and again so that I have the joy of “finding bike racing” all over again. This year I have good fortune of being Team Director for the Women’s NEBC Development Team. I hope to share all the joy that can be learned through racing and be inspired, as I always am, by their new enthusiasm for the sport.
Those who make it possible:
Dawn Lovejoy, Director