January 11, 2016 – Check out this interview with Canada’s Leah Kirchmann, former triple national champ (Road, ITT, Crit), in conjunction with the recent launch of the 2016 Liv-Plantur women’s racing team at the Italian Embassy in Berlin, Germany. The 10-rider team, representing five different nations, includes returning rider Floortje Mackaij, who won the women’s Gent-Wevelgem race in Belgium last year.
2016 Team Liv-Plantur Squad
– Leah Kirchmann (Canada)
– Floortje Mackaij (The Netherlands)
– Riejanne Markus (The Netherlands)
– Sara Mustonen-Lichan (Sweden)
– Rozanne Slik (The Netherlands)
– Julia Soek (The Netherlands)
– Kyara Stijns (The Netherlands)
– Sabrina Stultiens (The Netherlands)
– Carlee Taylor (Australia)
– Molly Weaver (Great Britain)
What does Keep Challenging mean for you personally?
I’m constantly looking for ways to improve myself, to be a better person. Not only on my bike, but also as a person. Every year I identify my weaknesses and see where I can improve.
What’s the most inspiring cycling moment in history for you personally?
Watching Catharine Pendrel become mountain biking world champion in 2014.
How does Team Liv-Plantur make you a better cyclist?
The team makes me better because it is able to provide all the tools that a cyclist needs.
Who inspires you as a human being?
Clara Hughes. She had a great athletic career as a cyclist and speed skater. She now uses her name for humanitarian purposes.
How do you spend your spare time?
I love to cook and to try new recipes and new foods.
What’s your favorite bike race?
The Tour of California, because of the beautiful routes and great surroundings.
What song makes you ride faster?
“Let It Go” by Canadian band Dragonette.
What has been your biggest achievement in your cycling career?
Finishing on the podium in La Course in 2014.
What’s your greatest ambition in the sport?
I want to be the best I can be and see how far I can go in the sport. Becoming an Olympic champion would be the biggest achievement possible.
What’s your definition of teamwork?
A group of individuals who use each other’s strengths to achieve a common goal.
If you weren’t a professional cyclist, what would you do?
I’d be a cross-country skier. I did this when I was younger. I’m also interested in research, for example, in nutrition.
What’s your personal motto?
“Go fast and have fun.”
What’s your favorite climb?
The Gibraltar Road Climb in Santa Barbara, California.
What’s on your personal bucket list?
I want to do the Vasaloppet in Sweden: the longest, oldest and biggest cross-country ski race in the world.