Maddie just returned from representing the USA at the Pan-American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico. She raced in the team sprint with her partner Liz Carlson, with whom she teamed up with to win a national title with two weeks ago.
Here is Maddie's race report:
Traveling to Mexico was a fantastic experience! We were staying in the Pan-Am Village with people from 42 countries and a multitude of different sports, so the Olympic atmosphere was very infectious and my partner and I were very excited to stretch the legs against the other teams. We had two days of training before we raced, and both of us were feeling good.
Race day finally came and we were sitting on the line listening to the countdown. Off we went and our qualifying ride felt fast and smooth. Liz was the starter and I finished the team sprint as I was riding 2nd wheel. When I crossed the line I looked up at the scoreboard to see what our time was. 34.788 seconds. The US women's team sprint team had only ever gone as fast as 35.8, so to take over a second off of the best time and break into the 34 second range was amazing! We couldn't believe it! However, we qualified 4th so we were in the ride for the bronze medal against the team of Mexico, who had qualified 3 tenths of a second faster than us, so we quickly got refocused for our ride in the finals that night. I filled up on my stock of Mix 1 that I brought along in the bottom of my bike box in preparation for the final because they provide the best pre and post race nutrition.
When our final came we were both ready to go, and the stadium was at an insane noise level, being that we were up against the hometown team. This ride didn't feel as clean, and our time ended up being a 34.993, which was still .3 off the time of the Mexicans. We were both disappointed to miss out on a podium spot, but it was a good learning experience and there will be some valuable lessons taken away from this race. Although, for some consolation, our time was the fastest on record in the US, so Liz and I are the new national record holders in the women's team sprint!
Overall this trip to Mexico was very positive, and the US Olympic Committee and the people of Guadalajara did a wonderful job of staging the Games. The US team had a very fun time, but now on to more races! I want to thank all of the sponsors of enCompass Racing for their support, Mix 1, FOCUS, and Schwalbe tires, and hopefully more great things will happen in the future.
I leave next week to participate in the first round of the UCI Track World Cup series in Astana, Kazakhstan where I will be racing in 3 events, including the team sprint. Stay tuned for more enCompass Racing race reports from all over the world!
Liz leading Maddie out during the team sprint on the track in Guadalajara
photo from ESPN