Sammie Maxwell

Kia Ora,

I’m Sammie Maxwell and I am one of those ‘strange’ people who enjoys riding bikes uphill. Yep, I’m a Cross-Country XCO racer. Call me strange, but to me there’s something addictive about the intense suffering that can be had on two wheels, and this is one of the many reasons I love XCO. However, my first endeavors into the world of cycling had nothing to do with training, suffering, or even racing for that matter. I first started riding when I was younger for the sole reason of a promised McDonalds ice-cream after the ride by my dad. What started as a treat-driven activity soon became the treat itself, with XCO mountain biking slowly becoming a part of who I was. Fast forward 10 years and I now find myself with three Elite XCO National titles, plus XCE, XCC and XCM titles to go with it, so where to from now? Well, for me 2023 is an exciting year, packed full of adventure with a full European XCO World Cup Campaign (excluding the American races) on the plans. My season will begin when I head over to Europe on the 5th of May and start racing on the 12th in Nove Mesto. I will then spend the next four months traveling between France, Switzerland, Italy, Andorra, Austria, and the UK with a quick stop back to NZ in the middle to keep the boss happy 😉 I have high hopes for Europe this year, not in terms of placings or points, but instead on the experience. I want to use this campaign as a chance to prove to myself that I am ready to step up into Elite racing next year, that I am ready for the tribulations and trials that come with competing at the highest level. In the past, the stress associated with racing overseas has left me leaning more on my primal ‘fight or flight’ brain that fosters poor eating decisions and self-doubt, leading to a deterioration in my health while away from home, only to return in a fatigued and unhappy place by the end of it. This year I want to prove to myself that I am ready to deal with this stress and maintain my health while away, to prove I can act like a mature, experienced athlete. Perhaps this will look like consistent placings, working my way through rankings, or simply completing a full season of racing without burn-out (which seems so common in young women’s cycling). I love the sport of mountain biking and I want to be able to spend as much time immersed in its community as I can. To do that means longevity in the sport and being healthy. Successfully completing my first full season away from home and managing my health while doing so will only be the first step of many towards a long, healthy career, but I’m excited to say that this is the first year I get to truly make that step! So, stay tuned and follow along to hear about my journey, and all the highs and (inevitable) lows it entails.

Stay groovy and keep it rubber side down,

S 🙂

0800 743 269