Race Updates By Kathryn Bertine
Greetings from the desert of Tucson, Arizona! I am proud to report that I was able to wear the new, beautiful SKN national team kit in two races in July; the Fitchburg Classic and the Tour of the Hilltowns, both in Massachusetts. (Not too far from where I have family in New York). Many thanks to Louis Shih of Champion Systems for turning ot such a generous, terrific team kit. Cant wait for the team photo!
The Fitchburg race is an "NRC" event, meaning one of the top events in the USA. We had 60ish top riders in the professional womens' field during the 4-day race (time trial, road race, circuit race and criterium). I finished in 14th place overall, which is considered pretty good in the cycling world. It was an amazing experience and I was able to note a lot of personal progress, finishing much cloer to the women who were ahead of me at the Pan Am champs. At the Tour of the Hilltowns, I placed fifth in a sprint finish. My highlight of the day was making it up the steep 5-mile hill--first--on a breakaway from the group. Another rider and I kept the rest of the field away for 20 miles, till they organized to catch us. :) It was such a fun race.
With results like these, it will likely help me find a high level pro team to race for next year...which means more exposure for SKN! I feel ready for Worlds and am preparing accordingly, with Coach Gord leading me into peak performance. I am up at 5am most mornings, tackling Tucson's notoriously tough group rides and Mt. Lemmon climbs. The desert is very hot and arid but incredibly gorgeous this time of year, but I sure miss the sparkling waters of Nevis.
I am so looking forward to coming to Nevis for the Independence Day Cycling Races, and then staying on for a few weeks until my trip to the World Championships in Italy. I cannot wait to help build a strong cycling federation so that someday the cycling world will look at SKN and see a force to be reckoned with! It can happen, it will happen. Long live sport!
See you soon,
For Pics of Kathryn in action, and the new uniform go to: http://www.smugmug.com/gallery/5540378_tKxQm#339334535_ypDWu