BendBroadband is proud to sponsor the Elevated Sports Performance (ESP) Cycling Team, the first-ever all-women mountain bike racing team in Central Oregon. Elevated Sports Performance, LLC and the ESP CyclingTeam was founded by former professional mountain bike racer and strength and conditioning coach Sloane Anderson in the Fall of 2013. “I really wanted to form a women’s team to bring awareness to the strong women riders we have here in Bend,” Anderson says. “I put together a relatively small team and we’re going to focus on strength training and real race results in an effort to be the premiere women’s mountain bike team in the Northwest”
From the ESP Team webpage:
Each rider has their own individual goals for the season but the ultimate goal for the team is to have fun, race hard and represent our sponsors, along with leading several cycling advocacy events in Central Oregon. The ESP/Bend Broadband Team are members of Oregon Bike Racing Association (OBRA) and will volunteer their time with the Central Oregon Trail Alliance (COTA) to help maintain local trails. Another Team goal is to promote a Marathon Series event, or a multi-day stage race in hopes to showcase the amazing trails around the Central Oregon area.
I got into riding as a way to explore a lot of beautiful terrain in a short amount of time—hiking was just too slow—and to be outside. I then found single track and fell in love with mountain biking. I like fast, flowing hard pack but also the challenge of technical single track that makes you focus on where you need to be, in that moment. I enjoy exploring different areas to ride—from Colorado to the the West Coast to Colombia, SA. As well as different terrain from rocky and rooty to fast, swooping burms and built up stunts. I love that it is a social activity or a solo one. I just feels good to be on my bike!
Chelsey Magness has podiumed on numerous adventure races around the world as part of Team YogaSlackers and has just recently taken up mountain bike racing. Her greatest individual racing accomplishment thus far has been winning the Maah Daah Hey 100 MTB Race and being the first and only girl to ever complete the brutal trail in a day. “I love how racing forces me to explore an emotional landscape of mountains and valleys that I might never see in normal life.” I love pushing my edges and seeing what it is like to go past them. In mountain biking it seems like I will never get bored; there are always ways to improve and challenge myself!”
Kyla started cycling in 2009 and realized that the more she kept riding the better she got. The thing she enjoys most about it is the realization that hard work does pay off. From the accomplishments she has achieved, to the success of clearing a rock garden during training after 10 tries, or winning the races she trained so hard for, are all what keeps her hungry every time she gets on the bike. Kyla loves that cycling makes her smile like a little kid, knowing that she is living a healthy lifestyle and staying fit doing something she truly enjoys.
I began cycling as an off season sport to snowboarding and to become more physically fit. I contacted my coach (Sloane Anderson) and registered for my first race before I even purchased a bike. Brand new to cycling (I mean I had never even been on a bike with gears), I did my first race four weeks after getting on a bike, and my second race eight weeks in. With persistent gym training and coach-managed bike workouts, I was able to have a successful first mountain bike season. Cycling has changed my life. I have learned an appreciation for personal accountability, daily training and how far I can push my own body before depletion. I now have a pure love for all things cycling and an addiction to the simple time spent in the saddle.
I have been a runner and road cyclist my entire life and enjoy setting challenges for myself to keep up my motivation. This past year I set a goal to run a half-marathon race a month for 13 months (13 13-milers in 13 months!). It was an amazing experience complete with a few minor injuries as well as huge fitness breakthroughs. I’m looking forward to transitioning to a new sport, improving my bike handling skills and setting new goals for myself.
The beauty of technical mountain biking is the way that it engages you. You must be fully present and in the moment. If your focus wavers, so does your line—and well, then it hurts. That’s why I have come to mountain biking. To me, it’s almost like a meditation practice without the cushion and sitting–it’s how I center myself.