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Athlete Spotlight: Erin Attwell

This is Erin Attwell’s first year on the Cycling BC High Performance Team. She also races and trains with Tripleshot Cycling Club. Erin’s focus is on road and track, but don’t be too surprised to see her out at a mountain bike or cyclocross race.

At the 2015 Western Canada Summer Games, Attwell won the road race, time trial, and came in third for the general classification. She was also the overall winner at the Rimouski stage race in Quebec. At 2015 Canadian Track Championships, Attwell won gold in the Team Sprint with teammate Sarah Van Dam; silver in the Team Pursuit Maggie Coles-Lyster and Margaret Ovenden; bronze in the Omnium; and silver in the National Sprint event. She’s just been accepted into Cycling Canada’s NextGen program.

Since the 2015 Canadian Track nationals it’s been pretty quiet for me. I took two weeks off where I got the chance to catch up with friends and family, school, and pulled out some baking supplies and tried out some new recipes.

My break has been extended unexpectedly, as I had a bit of a tumble mountain biking. I have no major injuries but had enough of a bash to get me out of the saddle for a couple more weeks.

I have recently been accepted into the NextGen program, which I am very excited about. This year I hope to be working towards meeting the time standard in the individual pursuit for track worlds. The trials for this are at the same time as the Junior and U17 Canadian Track Championships in Milton, Ontario on April 1-3rd 2016.

To reach my goal I am hoping to attend a couple of California Training camps with the U23 NextGen program in the next few months. These camps will be about 10 days long, focusing in getting base miles in preparation for the upcoming road and track season. Then in March I hopefully will attend a NextGen track-specific training camp at the new Pan Am track in Milton.

A piece of advice I can offer to other racers and riders is that there is a lot of pressure that comes with sport, and it can be very challenging.  However, you don’t always have to impress or please everyone.  I think the biggest reward comes from reaching your own personal goals, and just riding your heart out! The rest will follow. Opportunity is everywhere, people will see your talent but it will only come with hard work and determination. And of course have fun! I like to think of it as “if you enjoy what you do, you won’t work a day in your life,” no matter what you do!

One of my favourite quotes by Althea Gibson, an American tennis player and professional golfer, is “I always wanted to be somebody. If I made it it’s half because I was game enough to take a lot of punishment along the way and half because there were a lot of people who cared enough to help me.”  I think that it’s very important to recognize the people that helped make it possible to get you where you are in the sport now. Right now my parents are my biggest supporters! They are the best support system I could ever wish for and have! I’ve had a lot of other support from coaches, friends, teammates, other riders and racers, and family along the way as well.  A big thank you goes out to them for helping me get to where I am and always inspiring me to be the best I can possibly be.

Instagram: @erinattwell

Twitter: @erinattwell

Strava: @erinattwell

Game face
Start gate at 2015 Road Championships