Since getting back from London life has been a bit hectic with travelling around Australia engaging in many Community events, servicing my loyal sponsors Uvex, Toshiba, BHPbilliton and Musashi and stepping into the Corporate Speaking Circuit after joining ICMI.
Since London In August I have been on 65 Flights! Travelling a collective distance of 73,620 km!
The Speaking circuit has been fun and busy with me speaking at numerous events since the games. Some perks have seen me get a tour of both the Haigh’s Chocolate factory’s in Adelaide, attend the Melbourne Cup and Bendigo Cup as well as have a racing horse named after me. Keep an eye out for the filly ‘AnnaMeares’ the owner is hoping she is as fast as me.
It is with great pride and happiness that I have a new sponsor on board to support me through to Rio in 2016 in CQ Properties. Norman and the team at CQ Properties have followed my career and that of my sister Kerrie. 4-5years ago they named a street after each of us in the new estate in Gracemere where we spent our teenage years. I attended a family fun day in Gracemere where they named a park after me next to Anna Meares Avenue. It is a huge honour to have my name and my family name immortalised in such a way.
Sponsorship has been a tough gig for me after London with the disappointing news of Lance Armstrong. With three new contracts of sponsorship in negotiation at the time Lances’ news broke, it was sad to see all three contracts pulled with them no longer wanting any interest in the sport of cycling. It was sad and frustrating for me, to work so hard for 18 years, to have the most successful and challenging ride of my career, to make something from that only to have the sad actions of another from 12 years ago ruin it all. Cycling has suffered with sponsorship too which not only makes it tough at the elite level but the grassroots level too. I hope that my continued involvement in a sport I love will bring positivity at a time when goodness knows we need it.
That’s why I am so happy that not only have my current sponsors Uvex, BHPbilliton, Toshiba and Musashi all continued to support me but to see a local Company in Queensland where I grew up buck the trend and back me, a cyclist, I am grateful. If you want to check out their site and what they do please do so at the link below.
West Torrens City Council where I live in Adelaide also named a bike path after me near Adelaide airport that will link a number of other pathways in the future to eventually see a 17km loop around Adelaide airport specifically for pedestrian and cycling use. How wonderful to be a part of this.
I attended charity events in through my break as well supporting and fundraising for numerous events and organisations. I have also spoken to a number of schools keeping in touch with Australia’s youth.
It is awards season and below are some of the awards I have been honoured with;
Cycling Australia Awards:
- Female Track Cyclist of the Year
- People’s Choice
- The ‘OPPY’ and the title of the Overall Australian Cyclist of the year
For this awards night I had the privilege of wearing a dress designed by Natasha Dwyer. She had a special piece of Gold material that she didn’t know what to do with for 2 years and after watching me race and win gold in London, I inspired her to create a dress for me to wear that night. After she got in touch with me through my website, we met up on one of my trips to Sydney and from there she created the most beautiful gown just for me. I have never had the privilege to have a dress designed for me before so it was very special.
Other awards were:
- SA Sport Star of the Year awards seeing me win my third consecutive Athlete of the Year award and 4th in total putting me even with Leyton Hewitt,
- South Australian Sports institute Awards - Female Athlete of the year
- Women’s Health I support Women in Sport Awards- Overall Female Athlete of the year
I have been able to spend some time with Family celebrating my niece Brooklyn’s 9th birthday and my sister Kerrie’s 30th. My brother in law Glen and his girlfriend Hayley visited Mark and I in Adelaide and I will be sharing Christmas with the Meares Clan too.
I have been active as well, although nothing routine and structured like I am used to but I have delved into a bit of Cyclo Cross (CX) riding and racing with my husband Mark and the Port Adelaide Cycling Club. I have gone on long walks and attempted to run with my dog Bruce, I got to one Karate class (the new year will give me more time to attend these more frequently) I have ridden the mountain bike, done some gym, crashed a few track training sessions with my team mates because goodness me I miss them all. I supported Mark racing the CX National Series in Sydney and enjoyed the weekend away with the boys.
I had the chance to go on the cricket show during the Adelaide test and in preparation for that I asked if the shows’ hosts Michael Slater and or Brett Lee would be interested in coming out to have a go with me on the velodrome. Surprisingly Brett accepted and we were off for a few laps on the Adelaide Superdrome. Not before of course taking him to the top of the banking and scaring the pants off of him about how steep the track is. He was a really great sport and seemed to enjoy himself although he was much happier when it was all said and done. If you would like to see the segment on the show here is the link below.
What’s to come before Christmas?
I will continue to enjoy my sport catching the cricket and games of the Adelaide 36ers. Time with friends for dinner, coffee and catch ups is always on the cards. With the New Year looming travel will die down significantly for training to take priority.
Training begins on January 2nd with the team as we all come back together after the Christmas break and with three of our Sprint guys returning from Japan from the Keirin series the team will be all back together again plus some new and bright faces.
The New Year for me will remain busy with the 2013 TDU kicking off in January, a family visit for the Clipsal, participating in the F1 Australian Grand Prix Celebrity Race and the launch of my updated book (stay tuned for dates), mostly it’s back in the gym and on the bike for me. I will miss the 2013 World titles in Minsk in Belarus due to the lengthy break I had but my training will be in preparation for the first world cup of the 2013/2014 season in October of the New Year.
Merry Christmas to everyone and may 2013 be a happy, safe and healthy New Year.