Making the Olympic Long Team

Making the Olympic Long Team

 

In 2016 I stood on the start line for my first U23 World Cup. The day before I had pre-ridden the course with tears in my eyes and blood streaming down my legs. I was in over my head. I was fearful of the technical features. Three years later, in 2019, I stood on that same start line as a part of the USA Elite World Championship team. I represented my country, and I produced a result that qualified me for the Olympic Long team.

Hannah Rae Finchamp. Photo courtesy Hannah Rae Finchamp

WHAT IS THE OLYMPIC LONG TEAM?

Being named to the Olympic Long team does not guarantee that I will go to the Olympics. Each Olympic cycle, USA Cycling selects several riders as a part of the Olympic Long team. Then, from that list of riders, they will select the Short team, and the Short team will be the Olympic team. This year there are six women on the Olympic Long team vying for three Olympic spots. The final Olympic announcement will come June of 2021. I am one step closer to fulfilling this dream.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO ME?

Since I was 9 years old, I have been asked if I want to go to the Olympics one day. The answer was always, “Yes.” Even then I knew how far off that reality was. Today, I am the closest that I have ever been, and my 9-year-old self is elated. This is really happening!

I’ve always dreamed ahead of my reality. In 2016, when the last Olympic Long team was announced, I told myself…

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