Racing in the Olympic Games was the experience of a lifetime and I will never be the same again.
The lessons I have learned are immeasurable. I consider myself truly blessed and privileged to have been a part of something so incredibly huge and far-reaching.
But this was my first Olympic Games and, hopefully, only the beginning…
Going into the race, I knew that the odds were against me. Due to my age, I lack the racing experience many of my competitors have. Mountainbiking is one of those sports where experience counts exponentially in your favour and the only way to gain this experience is through racing.
This is the highest level anyone can possibly reach, and so offers the most experience to gain. I had nothing to lose by starting the race; I could only gain!
To me, it’s never just about the race. It never has been and never will be. When I look back on my experiences, I want to remember the challenges I overcame, how I grew as a person and, most of all, the lives I touched. I’m overwhelmed and inspired by the support I’ve received. Through my racing, I can only hope that I motivate all these people to reach for their dreams in what they do.
I realised out on course that people make life what it is. There is nothing more motivating than people screaming with encouragement for you in a race where you are in 28th place. People got me to where I am today and they got me through that race. I can do nothing alone. Thank you everybody who played a role in getting me across that finish line.
PATIENCE BE THE JOURNEY
It’s all a journey; every single pedal stroke I take moves me closer to where I want to be. It’s a long journey that takes patience and a lot of hard work and I don’t want to rush it. I love my life, I love the people in my life and I love what I do. God has blessed me with so much more than I deserve. I can only think that he wants me to take his blessings to places that others may not be able to reach.
I am already looking forward to World Champs in September where I will compete in U/23s again and where I hope to put to good use what I have learned here at the Olympics!
Image: Cor Vos