The upside to the downside
It’s been a hard few months but there are a lot of positive take-aways. I expected many of them, like getting to race bikes on crazy new trails, seeing new places and racking up a boat-load of frequent flyer points for an island vacation to tan my cyclist-white thighs someday.
But then there are the things I didn’t expect…
Like how cool it’d be to see my friend Krista Park saddle up to race two World Cups with her shoulder practically duct-taped together because she really just wanted to ride it. Or how awesome it’d feel to have the love and support of my friends, family and sponsors on this journey, including those who got up at 2 a.m. to watch me race on TV – even if they’d never see me.
And there’s the weird benefit to literally facing my cycling nightmare when I punched a whole in my grill. As much as it sucked, it was interesting to find it wasn’t as bad as I feared, and it was nice to get that monkey out of the corners of my mind.
Finally, I didn’t know how good it’d feel to know I believed in myself enough to go for my dreams; despite the odds, the obstacles and the fears, I said “F— it. I’m going for it.”
The end but not over
Though the official U.S. Olympic team announcement won’t come till June 15th, it’s safe to say my 32nd, 62nd, 39th and 48th finishes on the World Cup circuit this year won’t earn me a spot in London. But, as cliché as it sounds, it doesn’t matter at this point, because somehow I already won.
The bid is over but the season isn’t. Still lots more racing this year. Next stop is the Teva Games in Vail this weekend.
I’ll keep you posted.
Thanks for reading.
Judy Freeman is a pro mountain biker out of Boulder, Colorado. She was nominated to the Olympic Long Team as a potential rider at the 2012 London Olympics. Freeman races for the Crankbrothers Race Club. Team sponsors for 2012 include Ibis Bicycles, X-Fusion suspension, Formula braking, SRAM shifting, Crankbrother components, Pactimo clothing, Fi’zi:k saddles, Continental tires, Rocky Mounts racks and Pearl Izumi footwear. Join her for her monthly column on Singletrack.com called “Life as a Bike Jockey.” Also, be sure to follow her adventures on her Facebook athlete page.