Courtesy of Sharon Cox
Rachael Archer scored 2nd podium at GNCC WXC Round 5 at Camp Coker, South Carolina at the weekend in what must be described as combination of hard work, courage and conviction to realise #650 potential competing against America’s best Women Cross-Country racers in only 2nd season.
Apart from the fact that Rachael is THE only Kiwi racing overseas at present, the 18 year old from Ngaroma, Waikato has proved she has the ability to not only match her seasoned peers within WXC class, but also push the limits on keeping them at bay as Rachael goes for sought after win.
With results of: 3rd, 4th, 4th, 3rd and 2nd nailed heading into Round 6 in 2 weeks time, Rachael highlights how experience, effort and all out physical training has been put to good use when improving thought processes pre-and-during racing.
Assessing the track, line choices, challenges when dealing with lappers, pitting, passing and down right making her mark when coming through riders which top 600 in the 2 hour race, has really set Rachael’s bench-mark of success now and for the future.
#650: ‘Yes having had so much rain over the last week meant the quad race made some really gnarly ruts and the organisers ended up re routing a lot of the track which meant it was super fast. And being sand meant there were big braking bumps and lots of tree roots and good stuff like that!’
For sure, Rachael is gaining momentum on finding an edge over her competition- refining bike settings, greater familiarity with track venues, along with improved physical and mental training pre-during and post racing.
#650: ‘I’ve recently had my suspension revalved stiffer which is working a lot better for me this year since I’m going a bit faster than last year’.
‘I’ve been working with my coach Geoff Fryer at Fryer Performance really closely and we have been really working to iron out the kinks so I can get a win’.
‘The last 2 races I have led for 2 laps but that last lap always seems to let me down with the lapped rider traffic. This weekend was especially bad for lapper traffic, you have to rev and yell and swear at them to move in the tight sections which takes quite a bit of time when there’s 600 of them’.
‘This year has been made easier I think by knowing what to expect track wise when I arrive at an event. Most of the tracks are similar layout from the previous year which helps to know with bike settings, tyres etc’.
Remarkable to think Rachael was still at school end of 2018, albeit staring out the window waiting for next bike time on family farm. Yet, there is more to Rachael than just setting and achieving goals. There has been relentless desire to perform to her best even against the odds.
Boxes have been ticked through sheer force of believing in herself, being confident in her chosen field of sport even while living down-under in New Zealand. One things for sure, Rachael is powerful force for any-rider-competitor to face and long may she race to highest results possible.