In today’s edition of the Daily News Digest: Gesbert takes stage one of the Tour du Limousin; Landa signs two-year contract with Movistar Team; Van Baarle signs on for two more years with Cannondale-Drapac; Terpstra continues with QuickStep Floors, Leezer with LottoNL-Jumbo; Lappartient says UCI should set up a new top-level women’s stage race; Cycling world mourns death of 2004 Olympic champion Wooldridge; Threatened boycott of world team time trial championships appears to be over; Retired pro Iris Slappendel chases new land speed record; Bewley extends with Orica-Scott, says he wants to help squad achieve a major milestone; Preliminary order made against cyber-squatters in LeMond case; Greg Henderson ends pro cycling career; Meet the oldest female BMX racer in the US; Video: Phil Gaimon’s “Worst Retirement Ever,” Episode 7: Lookout Mountain
Your Wednesday Daily News Digest
Iowa Public Radio unearthed a gem of a story on BMX racer Kittie Weston-Knauer last week. A retired school principal, Weston-Knauer is the oldest female BMX athlete in the United States at 67 years of age. The Iowan started racing at the age of 40 after her then 11-year-old challenged his parents to give it a try. It stuck, and 29 years later, she’s still going at it.
At the time, women in BMX were few and far between. In fact, Weston-Knauer (and one other woman) raced with the men because there was not a women’s class. “As I continued to do this, women said I would love to do that, but I don’t want to race against the guys. For me, that wasn’t an issue because I wanted to race, and I actually raced against my husband because we were the same age,” explains Weston-Knauer.
Her love of racing helped her overcome several setbacks. In 1993 she was involved in a bike accident that left her temporarily paralyzed. Since then, she has also undergone hip and knee replacement surgeries, and was nursing a broken ankle at the time of the interview.
“What keeps me out there? You know here is the thing, we are living longer lives,” she said. “What I want to be able to do is to know that there is quality in my life and this sport provides that for me.”
“I am now, not so much competing against other women but competing against myself and I do that because I want to continue to enjoy what life brings to me. You know, the knees and the hips are arthritic, and we go through that, but the other side of that is those can be easily replaced and you go through whatever you have to go through to get yourself back to where you want to and where you need to be”.
To hear more of Kittie Weston-Knauer’s story, listen to this interview by Talk of Iowa.