What do you get when you take a hair dresser, intensive care flight paramedic, insurance broker and physiologist? The SheSpoke Cycle Wear Team who placed third at the Tour de Timor. The Tour de Timor boasted an impressive prize pool of $100,000, as a not-for-profit event, the equal prize money for men and women was a draw card particularly for the SheSpoke Cycle Wear Team who donated their prize money to the Life, Love and Health Foundation.
Team SheSpoke had some excellent experience going in with team leader Lauretta Howarth whom placed third in the 2010 Crocodile Trophy in Far North Queensland, Lauretta, Jade Forsyth and Lesley Sutton had taken all three podium positions in the Herberton 8 hour enduro in Far North Queensland. Both Kelly and Jade had previously left their mark on the East Timorese event bringing valuable experience to the start line.
The six day multi-stage MTB event attracted over 300 international riders and 100 Timorese riders who tackled the 600km offroad journey.
Lauretta reflected on her journey in East Timor, "Racing in a developing country is challenging. Many of the facilities we take for granted here in Oz simply don’t exist in Timor-Leste, making the race a little more challenging but also adding to the uniqueness of the Tour De Timor experience."
Photo © Keith McQueen
Kelly was out after the first day coming down with an illness that left her assisting the physio team for the remainder of the journey.
Lauretta made the following comments, "despite a few set backs and challenges the Tour De Timor was fantastic. Some pot-holes were so deep you’d struggle to climb out if you ever fell into one, not to mention sections where the road had simply disappeared leaving menacing drop-offs."
In the Open Womens category, the team placed third, behind two other Aussie womens teams and the prize money that they donated to The Life, Love and Health Foundation is used to fund and facilitate grassroots projects in Timor-Leste that benefit Timorese communities, particularly women and children to achieve improved health and education.
The dates for 2012 have already been announced, 9-14 September and registrations open on November 1 this year. If you’re into pain and you think you’re ready to join 400 elite mountain bikers then you should check out www.tourdetimor.com.
To find out more about the SheSpoke Cycle Wear Team and their latest adventures head to www.shespoke.com.au
A wonderful set of photos courtesy of Mathew Lynn that set you directly inside the action as Team SheSpoke powered through Timor.
Photoset & Title Photo © 2011 Mathew Lynn