And so it begins… My life as a full-time cyclist racing in Europe has officially kicked off! I’ve been in Italy now for the last two weeks; I’ve moved into the team house, met all of my new teammates, gone through a professional photo shoot, donned my new team colors on the Diadora stage at our team presentation, and trained and raced with my new team under the guidance of my new directors.
I have to say that I feel pretty lucky. The team is completely dialed: the sponsors, the management, the staff, the house, the cars, the equipment, the clothing, the riders. The entire organization is 100% classy and professional.
And we are in Italy of all places! Such a beautiful country that I love more and more every time I’m here. I’m enjoying the scenery and the culture, the food, the language, the terrain, the weather. All is new and exciting.
There is definitely a language barrier between me and some of my new teammates, but it’s all about passion when it comes to cycling. I am learning to read body language and emotion in the eyes of my teammates, and that’s the same no matter what country you come from. However, I would like to learn the language, so that I can really get to know the riders that I’ll be spending all my time with this season. Like any team I have ever been a part of, I consider the Diadora girls and management to be like family to me.
The energy on this team is incredible. It’s positive and dynamic, and the potential for success is limitless. It is a team in every sense of the word. Riders from all walks of life and many different countries have come together to do what they love most: cycling. And we will do it all year together as a team. We will share the good times and the bad. We will be here for each other. Like no other time in my life, this was clear the moment I met my new Diadora teammates.
Our first big challenge will be the UCI Race Costa Etrusca in Cecina, Italy. We will field a team of 8 riders. When you hear from me again, I will have raced my first World Cup Road Race: Alfredo Binda. I hope to have some good news for you from team Diadora!
Thanks for reading!
Team Training Camp Snapshots
While at training camp, ASI’s Team Marketing Coordinator Milay Glavez got to go behind the scenes with Shelley and her teammates before a team ride and then shot some great pics from the team car. Check out her awesome photos below!
The Diadora-Pasta Zara House
Jessica Uebelhart suits up for a chilly ride.
Jessica waits while Francesca Stefani straps on her Carerra helmet.
From left to right : Jessica, Francesca, Alona Andruck, and Eleonora Patuzzo.
Team Manager Manel Lacambra jokes about the length of the upcoming ride.
Olga Zabelinskaya adjusts her saddle with the help of mechanic Alex Flavio.
Rachel Neylan and Claudia Hausler smile for the camera.
A close-up of a decal on one of the team’s Fuji Supremes – a road bike made specifically for women and the official bike of Diadora-Pasta Zara.
Olga is off and running.
Amber Pierce is all smiles… before the climb.
Shelley Olds and Inga Cilvinaite work their way up a steep climb.
Shelley and Claudia arrive at the summit.
Shelley points out the incredible landscape surrounding them.
A quick water break before the descent.
An awesome view of what lies below.
Claudia and Olga lead the pack.