With her second place finish in May at the UCI World Cup in Bresse, France, Katerina Nash secured an automatic qualification to the 2012 London Olympic Games. She will be representing the Czech Republic in cross country mountain biking.
“This is going to be my fourth Olympics,” Nash told podiuminsight. “This selection feels very different. I went to the Olympics in 1996 as a 19 year old. It was a great experience.”
Nash placed 19th at the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games in the very first Olympic cross country mountain bike race. She then went on to finish sixth in the 4x 5km cross country skiing relay at the 1998 Nagano Winter Games and finished 20th in the 15km cross country skiing at the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games.
“I did my skiing until early 2002 when I was picked up by Luna. When I finished Salt Lake City, I really thought I would not be going back. It really didn’t cross my mind. I thought let me give mountain biking a try and here it is ten years later.”
She will be competing in London as one of the favorites.
“I am not only going to the Olympics but this time I am fighting for a medal. This is really exciting. I am very motivated. I have had a very good season. I have been on the podium a couple of times. Things are really coming together this year. I definitely hope to be one of the contenders. I have seen the London course. I haven’t raced it but I have done the official training days on it. It’s cool and challenging. I like the course a lot. I think it is going to be exciting to watch.”
Nash had quite the weekend. She won the Ute Valley Pro Women XCT mountain bike race in Colorado on Saturday, then won the Nevada City Classic bicycle race on Sunday for the third year in a row.
“Nevada City Classic was tough training for me. I live in Nevada County and this is a super classic race in our area. I managed to get out of Colorado yesterday and flew home. I just wanted to do this race. The field was tough but it’s a really good speed workout for mountain biking.”
Nash, along with LUNA teammates Georgia Gould, Catharine Pendrel, and Teal Stetson Lee will head to the Mont-Sainte-Anne, Québec to compete in the next World Cup. From there, they will move to the final North American World Cup race in Windham, New York.