You’ve been through successive injuries the last few years. What’s your journey been like to get back on the bike and up to speed?
Maybe I’m used to it? I had two broken wrists, and before that I had a broken arm that I had a few surgeries on. I don’t know, you keep working. I feel like I don’t have any pressure to do anything now. I’m not committed to the downhill circuit and I’m not committed to the enduro circuit. I just ride my bike. It’s what I want to be doing and I like racing, so... A 'no pressure' situation has helped me ease back in. Last year at the end of Andorra I made it down and was like whooo I just made a whole season!
Finishing off the season injury free in Andorra 2015.
What is your program this year, and this week for Crankworx?
I'll be at the next World Cup in Andorra and Champs. Crankworx will be busy! I've raced the EWS, the Garbanzo DH, the Air DH and next the Canadian Open. It will be a full on week, but that's the way it should be.
A 3rd place finish in Leogang really seemed to set the tone for your year – how was that?
I went in thinking that with a top ten I’d be stoked. I like that course, I was riding it well, but there’s one section I couldn’t get all weekend. I was pretty stressed and surprised when I qualified fourth, but it changed my whole goal to a top five finish and I was pretty stoked. It was interesting because I was in the start gate and I was feeling like I had a really good practice run so I thought I would just try and do that again and I had a good run and it worked. A lot of the time in my race run there is something I am still trying to figure out, but I think I just had a better game plan and it worked.
After Leogang you went and snagged a 5th at the La Thuille EWS, the Canadian National Champ title, and a 5th place at MSA. How have you been enjoying the switch between the two? Can we expect to see a similar mix of events on your schedule for next year or are you going to focus your efforts more?
I've really been enjoying doing both, although I usually struggle a bit getting back on the small bike. Downhill is still my passion and I feel that there are things I'd still like to accomplish. Enduro is rad because you ride your bike way more over the weekend, but you don't get to go as fast. Physically, I feel they're both challenging but in different ways. At the end of a downhill weekend you usually feel like you've been run over by a truck. Perfect world, I'd race downhill with some select EWS rounds on the side.
You mentioned there’s no pressure now, how does that change your mindset?
I’m 26 now, I’m over the hill ha ha. I’m still on my own program, I choose my own races so you know it just works for me.
When you are at home what are you riding mostly? Trail or DH?
Pretty much trail bike all the way up until the bike park opens and then all I want to do is ride bike park. We did an enduro in Whistler before heading to Europe for Crankworx Les Gets and La Thuile and I was so sketchy on it. I felt like I couldn’t ride it anymore, but after a day you kind of get used to it so. But bike park on my DH bike, it’s still the best. I like to road ride a lot too which I think kinda complements downhill.
Favorite riding buddy?
That’s hard there’s a pretty good crew in Whistler - probably Remy Gauvin and Adam Mantle.
Are you still working as well as riding?
Yep, I work full time at Corsa Cycles, usually from October right until the bike park opens in May and then I just float all summer then go back usually after the last race in September.
How did you get your start riding bikes and how are you so good?
Someone actually asked me that the other night, and they asked about being a female cyclist; that’s something I’ve never identified with because I just grew up doing it. I grew up in Pemberton and in the summer we’d go to the bike park and in the winter we would go ski. Most of my friends were boys or whatever, but it was never like 'Oh look, that’s a girl who is mountain biking'. It’s just what everyone did.
Do you think that will change as we keep growing the sport? That girls on bikes won’t be such a unique thing to so many people?
I personally already think that it is like that. I mean, just working in the bike shop like you see so many rippers. It was interesting last year we had the burliest trail bike in this one brand and we just sold it to women. Only women. Tons of chicks are trail riding and they want good bikes. In the Sea to Sky you get used to it. It’s normal, in some places they see your pony tail and they get hyped.