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 Interview with Kadee Webber

 

This interview was first published on www.CycleSportnews.com earlier in August - it comes to WomensCycling.net courtesy of Peter Ford

Here's the Interview >>>> 

When Kadee Webber came into the world at Alamander Hospital on the Gold Coast nearly 16 years ago, she wasn’t exactly born with a tight grip on a Shimano handle bar.

In fact there wasn’t a pedal cleat in sight for about 14 years, and then her ridingcareer began to fall into place.

“I was a runt of a 14 year old and I loved running long distances” Kadee told CSN. “I was looking for a new running coach, when I met a triathlon coach by the name of Jenny Alcorn. I only started with her because I wanted to run, but with the excitement of learning how to ride as well as swim, well I was in for that”.

For the next 12 months, Kadee plugged away at “steadily getting there”, and after achieving top ten placing in most of her races, she decided that she needed to take everything to the next step.

Her father set about getting information about cycling clubs on the Coast, and when Kyadee discovered that some of the junior boys in the Tri Club had joined the Gold Coast Cats and were racing and getting experience with real cyclists, she thought that was “pretty cool”, and decided to join.

Kadee’s first criterium was in a D Grade race at Burleigh, and despite have a few doubts as to why she was doing what she was doing, Kaydee “got herself together” and finished up doing fairly well.

Fortunately, our budding star, did not stop here, and over the last couple of years, she has developed into a highly promising young cyclist.

As with all developing riders, Kadee is full of praise for her coach and her other riding friends.

“I would have to say that my greatest influences are be the people who I train with. My coach Stan Brims; Lauren Rowney, Dianne Monk, Dee Boys , Kane Anderson, Jackson Wardrop and Lee Hall.

Each of these people have inspiring qualities, which I one day wish to achieve. Coming into the sport at a later age, not knowing many of the do’s and dont’s, and really just learning all I can by being in an environment with the Coast’s leading riders greatly moves me”.

Being a female in the sport has also presented Kadee Webber with certain challenges.

“ I think that being a female and getting into the sport, is actually harder, because once you get to a certain age, it becomes tough because there aren’t many girls in the sport and the majority of the girls who do ride are of a high standard. So being older and less experienced and being trained to be as good as the girls who have been at it since they were little tiny takers, makes it a bit harder. But it’s good to know that if you’re staying with them now, imagine what you could do when you’re at your peak?”

Kadee races against C grade riders in the local competition, where her opposition is a mixture of men and women of all ages.

“I haven’t yet actually been in a race where there have been a high number of women riders, but what I have seen by racing locally, I believe that the talent is of an average to high standard”.

Kadee agrees that the number of females racing can be disappointing at times, but says that numbers appear to be better than previous years.

“ I believe that if the women were treated as if they were men, and had all the same racing privileges as the men, then maybe more women might be interested in getting started in the sport. If there was greater interest in the women, maybe it may inspire the younger generation to follow along”.

At the moment Kaydee is in hard training for the State Championships on the weekend, and then two weeks after that, she will be riding headlong into the Nationals!!

“So I’m right in the middle of it all. The program at the moment is just a lot of building my strength and increasing my power on hills and on the flats. In saying that, I continually hit my maximum limits and I’m often reaching new stages of my cycling career. I’m also in the process of learning how to race mentally, which we all know, isn’t the easiest of things”

Life at 15 also presents its share of problems, but Kadee Webber appears to have it all under control.

“ Personally, I believe that it is important to balance training and having a social life. I think that if all athletes can balance their lives, they will do better in their sport, because you don’t want to train, train, train and have no fun. I don’t believe I miss out at all socially. I have many close friends who support me all the way. When I go out to parties I don’t drink, because I know I can have a good time without being drunk, and my friends respect that, and if I go out at night I make sure I’m home at a reasonable hour. So really I think it’s not a challenge at all to have a balanced life”.

At the moment Kadee has many major goals which she hopes to accomplish, including reaching the top level of state and national competition, being named in the AIS as a Junior Development member, and then finally being named in the Australian team for the Olympics.

For Kaydee Webber the list goes on.

“I have strong ambitions and wish to go as far as I possibly can with the sport, so in the future watch you tail, because I’ll be on it!”.

Kadee can’t wait to move into the Elite ranks, and already has her sights set on obliterating the opposition.

“ There’s no point in being (an “also-ran”) all your life, the only way to improve is to take the next step up, and show them what you’ve got. I’m personally looking forward to moving up into the elite ranks because it’ll be a challenge and I’m always up for a challenge”.

Kadee believes that physically the transition to the Elite level will be a difficult transition.

“If it was too easy, everybody would be moving into the Elites” she added. “I believe it will be a challenge, but it will make me stronger in the end”.

In such a short career so far, Kadee Webber’s trophy cabinet is not exactly overflowing with cycling cups and medals, however she recently came away with three Gold medals in the Regional Championships and finished 7th overall in the Gold Stars Junior Tour.

“I won a sprint and crossed the line 5th in the 2nd road race” she proudly told CSN, “and that was my first time racing against the top girls in Queensland!”

“Racing at Mooball really exited me, as it was my first big race of the season. On both days I finished well, placing 6th in the sprint, after surviving the challenging Binna Burra range, and the next day finishing 5th in the flatter course around the small beach side towns. But I’d have to say that my most memorable moment would have been when I placed first women home at the Australia Day Tumbalgum Handicap race. I heard that a few people doubted my ability,and said that I wouldn’t finish, but in the end the limit riders caught me a kilometre from the finish line and I finished the race, surprising those who were doubting me”.

“ At the moment, if I were to compare myself to the top female riders, in my division, I would have to say that I’m getting there. My development is promising, and I’m finishing with the irls and women who have had much more experience than me”.

For the remainder of the year Kadee hopes to achieve as much as possible in her sport, and then with the help of her coach, Stan Brims, she wants to make a very smooth transition to the ranks of the U19s.

“ I believe that in having an ultimate goal, you must have smaller goals to be able to reach in the meantime”.

And what about Kadee Webber, when she not out there trying to be Australia’s next female cycling superstar?

This girl loves to go shopping, takes in a movie or two, and enjoys hanging out with her friends.

Kadee also holds down a casual job in a local sports store, and is highly appreciative of understanding bosses who realise cyclists’ needs to train and race and still fit in their work commitments.

On top of all this, you’ll find her singing along with Ricki Lee, Missy Higgins or Green Day, or taking an interest in various sports around the place.

“I have always been interested in sport, ever since I was teased as a kid. Sport seemed to take my mind off how depressed I was in those days, and that’s how I got into it. If I wasn’t into cycling, I think I would be more into the Arts, as I also happen to have a creative flare, and could see myself acting or being an artist, because I also like that kind of stuff”.

Good luck to Kadee in whatever she tries!!

 

 

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To view photos of Kadee, click here, or click on the images below >>