14.06.2017 Element race reporter, Glenn Te Raki spent a little time with newcomer, Erin Nolan. Photo Credit – ZW Photography.

After a successful weekend of racing in the third round of the Element Road Series at the Cyclassic in Kalgoorlie a few weeks ago, I was happy to spend a little time with a relatively newcomer to the sport of cycling. Not only was it her first time competing in the two-day event but she also came away with the overall win in the women’s section and a Gold Nugget in her pocket for all the hard work.

Erin Nolan was a relative unknown this time last year, but she goes into this weekend’s fourth round of the Element in Pickering Brook as one of the favorites in the women’s A grade.

Erin was happy to give me a little time and insight into what makes her tick…

How long have you been competing in competitive cycling for?

I was a recreational rider and commuter until late 2016 when I did my first ever road race which was just prior to the 2016 Tour of Margaret River which I competed in Category 2 with the Garland R1 team.

What got you into the sport of cycling?

I retired from competitive boxing and was looking for another sport to keep active, maintain fitness and expand my social network.  I’ve always enjoyed riding my bike in the beautiful Perth climate and soon enjoyed the social group riding scene which started through Garland Cycleworks shop rides. I was then approached to join the Garland racing team which afforded me the opportunity to start racing in a fully supported but competitive environment.

What’s been the drive behind this seasons success?

Having a structured training program through the Exercise Institute, constant testing and tweaking the program has been critical to achieving performance improvements.  Race strategies provided by our coach and mentors and implementing the tactics during training has also offered a valuable dimension to my racing.

Can you tell us a little bit about your back ground in sporting?

I have a long love affair with all sports.  Growing up in the country I played hockey, tennis and netball as a junior and continued to expand my affiliations with touch rugby, squash, triathlon and later boxing.  After recovering from 4 knee reconstructions any sports that involves running was out the question and hence, the low impact nature of cycling is perfect for my structural limitations.

How do you see this weekend panning out for you?

This will be the first time I’ve done the Pickering Brook course so it will definitely be a learning experience for me.

You are part of what looks like a close-knit team of women, has this help you this year?

Absolutely!  I’m very privileged to be part of the Veris Womens Racing Team and surrounded by such capable and supportive team mates who have definitely contributed to my successes.  Being a new member to not only my team but the broader cycling community, the support and camaraderie of my team and our network of supporters through the Cycling Development Foundation has been unbelievable.  We all share a common goal of creating a positive and supportive culture in womens cycling and it’s fabulous to see so many amazing and strong ladies on the racing scene who are equally as passionate about creating a positive environment in the sport.

Where to for you for the remainder of the 2017 season?

The remainder of the 2017 season will include the last half of National Road Series with Tour of King Valley in late August, followed by Amy’s Otway Tour and finishing with Battle on the Border which will see a solid block of training in the lead up to these milestone events.

Thanks for spending a little time letting us get to know you Erin and we wish you all the best this coming weekend.

Stay tuned for our pre-race write up in the coming few days.