Merlin Cycles sit down with award-winning pro cyclist Tiffany Cromwell for an enlightening interview.2013 was an amazing year for Australian pro cyclist Tiffany Jane Cromwell; as well as winning the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad Femme in Belgium and being nominated for SBS Australian Cyclist of the Year, she also competed in 20 twenty other pro races throughout the year.
This year looks set to be just as busy, if not more so, as Tiffany recently announced she’ll be leaving Orica AIS to ride with Specialized Lululemon. But before she makes the big move, we’ve been lucky enough to have the chance to sit down with the pro cyclist and discuss what got her into cycling in the first place.
Name: Tiffany Cromwell
Current Team: Orica-AIS
So Tiffany, how did you first get in to cycling?
I was picked up in a talent search program by the state sports institute (SASI) through my school when I was 13. After some basic fitness testing I was invited out to the Adelaide Velodrome to try a couple of sessions on the track followed by a VO2 max test. From there I was invited to join the cycling program.
Do you remember your first proper bike?
Trek 1000 road bike and a Fuji Track bike.
Who was your cycling hero growing up?
Growing up it was Stuey O’Grady. I grew up in Adelaide, SA the same hometown as Stuey and he was one of the few pro riders from my state at the time. As a junior rider he was the guy a lot of us looked up to.
How do you unwind during season and off season?
By doing random adventurous activities. I like to travel somewhere with a suitcase that includes no lycra and have a short holiday. I enjoy letting my hair down and catching up with friends for a good night out. I like to find a non-cycling related challenge.
Last year I did a marathon, this year I raced a Spartan race; I go hiking; I went para-gliding one year, sky diving another. You kind of get the picture. I can’t really sit still, I enjoy doing things that I can’t do during the season. When I finally get back to Australia in the off season I enjoy spending time with my family.
What do you do to keep fit (other than cycling)?
A range of things: Swimming, running, paddle boarding, snowboarding, gym, hiking and wakeboarding.
Where is your favourite place to race?
Belgium or Italy
If you could compete in any cycling race, what would it be?
Tour de France
What has been your favourite race so far?
Flanders and the world championships.
In November you announced you’ll be leaving Orica-AIS for Specialized Lululemon, are you excited for the move?
Very excited, I can’t wait to join the Specialized Lululemon team. I had a great time with Orica-AIS but I’m ready for a change. I look forward to meeting all my new team mates and experiencing a new environment. I hope we can have plenty of victories and good times together.
What is your top tip for younger cyclists looking to break in to pro cycling?
Make sure you are always enjoying what you’re doing, it’s key for a good performance. Talk to more experienced riders and take advice from them. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You will have more downs then ups in your career, don’t let the downs upset you, use them as motivation to bounce back and when you have success take it in and enjoy the moment. It’s the best feeling in the world!
Thank you for taking the time out of your day to talk to us Tiffany, we wish you all the best in the New Year!