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Ayesha McGowan Races To Be The First African American Cyclist To Go Pro

Written by Rewindingblack

In only her second year of racing bikes, of Brooklyn took home the 2015 New York State Cat 3 road-race championship. The 28-year-old preschool music teacher is also the program director for the nonprofit InTandem, which uses tandem bikes to provide riding opportunities to people with disabilities. Here’s how she plans to make history—and how she shares her love of cycling along the way.

“In 2007, I borrowed my mom’s bicycle—may it rest in peace—from our basement. It still had a baby carrier attached to it, for my sister, who is eight years older than me.”

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“The day before the New York State championships, I decided I wanted to win. I was nervous since I haven’t done a lot of climbing. But I’m mentally tough—that’s what I have going for me. If I decide I’m going to do something, I manage to pull it off.”

“I’ve spent the whole year getting comfortable sticking to a wheel and trusting it. To get over the fear of being near people, do more group rides. In the city, a lot of the ladies who do these rides also race and are happy to give advice.”

“Next year I will be a Cat 2, for sure. Hopefully, I’ll be picked up by a domestic elite team.”

“As far as I know, if I got a pro license, I’d be the first female pro. I’m waiting to hear about someone who’s already done it—I would be so excited!”

Read More At http://www.bicycling.com/culture/people/-could-become-first-african-american-woman-go-pro?cid=soc_BicyclingMag_TWITTER_Bicycling__

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