Twice a month, the Women’s Cycling Association showcases an inspiring rider from the women’s cycling community. This week we’re excited to introduce Women’s 50-54 Cyclocross National Champion Ann Trombley.

Women’s Cycling Association: How did you become involved in cycling?

Ann Trombley: My family and friends pooled money to buy me a Mountain bike for my 21st birthday, that was 1984. I had been riding my Mom’s oversized 10 speed to school. My guy friends then dragged me out on to Mount Tam and I chased them around for several years before dabbling in the race scene.

Vital Stats
Name: Ann Trombley
Hometown: Nederland, CO
Racing Age: 51
Category: 1
Primary Discipline: MTB
WCA: What has been your most memorable experience in the sport?

Ann: Oh Jeez, there are so many it is hard to pick one. And the memories just keep coming. I think going to the Olympic’s would have to be one of the biggies. Being in the Olympic Village with all of the best athletes in the worlds. Then the opening ceremonies was huge. You felt like a rock star with everyone in the world being your audience. The “Breakthrough” races are always memorable. Those races where you realize you are faster, stronger and can push harder than you thought. I will never forget my race in Mammoth Mountain California. One of the National events. I was leading the point series at the time. Off the start someone hooked my bars and I went down. Then one of my competitors ran over me. After getting up, I realized my stem was twisted and I couldn’t get it to straighten out manually. I had to get my tool out, loosen bolts and re-tighten and then get going. After riding for a few minutes, I realized the visor on my helmet was hanging in my face and blocking my view. I had to rip it off and toss it. I was so fired up I just kept passing people. I ended up in 6th place! Yes, I was no longer the points leader, but I had the best race of my life and was thrilled with how fast I was going and I was having fun. Its not always were you place that matters!!

WCA: What challenges have you faced in cycling?

Ann: The biggest challenge was finding support. In order to race at the top level, you need both money and mental backing. I had Huge support from my awesome family, which is the main reason I made it so far. However, trying to get sponsorship was incredibly hard and limited.

WCA: What do you enjoy most about the sport?

Ann: I love the camaraderie and the cool group that I get to ride and race with. The people that you meet riding mountain bikes is awesome. We enjoy the outdoors, travel, camping, going hard up hill and down, getting dirty and laughing. How can you go wrong hanging out with these types of people?

WCA: What are your goals in cycling?

Ann: Get more support for women and girls! Really, the women are some tough cookies. Yes they aren’t as fast as the men YET but the racing is getting more and more aggressive and competitive. I really appreciate the barriers and mores women racers have to overcome to get to the top levels.

WCA: What are some of your goals outside of the sport?

Ann: Motivate women to support each other! Yes, I love men. I have a wonderful husband and lots of male friends. Truth be told, I really enjoy riding with men. However, I think it is time we started realizing women can get the job done just as well, if not better, than men. We should be recognized as leaders in our fields and be paid equally! A great way to support this is to have women support each other. Next time you are looking for someone to get your job done, or you are donating your time or money, look at women owned businesses, groups, and programs.

WCA: What do you like to do in your off season?

Ann: What off season?! Here in the Boulder area, we can cycle all year round. And Cyclo-Cross has become a huge sport in this area. And most disciplines are really starting to ride and train all year. With that said, living in the mountains, I do some nordic skiing. Not enough but some.

WCA: What do you think you can do to help women’s cycling grow?

Ann: Keep talking! I do a lot of skills and coaching with women. It is Awesome to get a group of women together to do skills and rides. They really motivate each other and it is amazing what they will try when they work together. I helped start and am a coach for Boulder Junior Cycling. I truly enjoy teaching the kids and encourage the girls to join and ride. I am a huge supporter of the Amy D Foundation: www.amydombroski.com/site/store. After losing Amy to an Auto accident while she was training, I realized what a gem we had lost in the cycling community as well as an amazing role model. The Amy D foundation is one of the ways we can give to our up and coming powerful women. I am hoping there are more methods to support women in the future.

WCA: How do you think cycling empowers women?

Ann: I think riding and racing challenges you to overcome obstacles(literally). If you can learn this while riding, it translates to being able to deal with what comes up in Life.

Ann Trombley is the 2014 Women’s 50-54 National Cyclocross Champion. She turned Pro in 1996 and garnered impressive results immediately on the national circuit to earn her a berth on the US Mountain Bike Championship Team. She would earn a spot for Worlds each year thereafter through 2000. Most impressively, in 2000 Ann would be one of three women to qualify and compete at the Sydney Olympics. Ann was ranked 2nd in the National series for Cross Country and National Champion for Shortrack as well that same year. You can find out more about her on her website at http://www.trailmastercoaching.com.

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