All good things come to an end - Helen Wyman
All good things come to an end, and my eight seasons with Kona have certainly been a good thing. But from 1 January 2018 I’ll be looking for new partners as I start life after Kona. It’s a huge disappointment to not have the opportunity to continue with the brand, but I’ve had so many good times with them and only positive memories to cherish. I’m also in the fortunate position that I have a strong support team around me who are already working on new opportunities.
So what’s next? Given the situation in Cyclocross right now, with small teams and relatively few opportunities for women, the most likely option is to continue as an independent professional, and put together a group of partners who will support me over the coming seasons. I hope I have a proven track record of providing a valued return to partners and with the increased profile on women’s cyclocross, this should be increased.
My focus over the coming weeks will be on seeing if there is sufficient interest from potential partners for me to establish a personal program. Any interested parties can contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s an exciting time where I hope to forge lasting relationships with brands, as I have been fortunate to do with several key brands in my career to date.
Following the injuries I sustained last season, my focus has been on getting back to 100% fitness, which I’m pleased to report has happened. I finished last season with a 2nd place in a Superprestige race, before leading a group of Cyclocross training days throughout the UK. I’m training harder than ever and importantly enjoying turn of the pedal. I don’t consider training a chore and never considered being away at races at sacrifice; it’s a choice, a pleasure and a privilege. The “numbers” are great, and I’ve got two altitude camps and a racing block in Belgium planned during June and July.
My 2017/18 season is initially planned, and I’m starting my season in the USA, with 3 weekends of racing, and then returning to Europe for the major three series, of course including the World Cups. It’ll be a season of two halves, as from 1st January I’ll be wearing a new jersey to reflect my new partners, and hope to assemble a team of likeminded people who together with myself can have a positive impact on the sport.
Over the past four seasons, I’ve dedicate some of my time to helping progress the sport for the next generation of riders via my work with the UCI CX Commission. But now my time on the UCI cross commission is at an end as it stands, I’ll be putting my focus onto progressing the sport in other ways, although I’m very proud of what I’ve achieved there; Increased opportunity for women racers, a huge advance towards equality and a much higher profile sport for women in the years to come. Hopefully the progress can continue and when the new changes are published by the UCI in the coming weeks, riders and fans will be as excited as I am about the planned changes.
Any parties interested in joining me as a partner for the coming season should get in touch as soon as possible, even if it’s just an exploratory conversation. Fingers cross the next few season will be as exciting as the last few.