Peloton Watch
  Kelsey Robson on her decision to retire  
  January 7th 2014  
  Talented Australian junior cyclist Kelsey Robson announced her retirement on Monday. Announcing her decision on Instagram with a message "Some of you may have heard I'm retiring from cycling, this is true. It's been one heck of a ride and I can't thank everybody enough for their endless love and support throughout my career! I've made friends for life and memories that I'll keep with me forever. Catch you all on the flip side x x x"

Robson shot to prominence in 2012 taking two Rainbow Jerseys at the Junior Track World Championships in Invercargill, New Zealand. Victory number one came in the Team Pursuit with Robson teaming up with Georgia Baker and Taylah Jennings to take the win over New Zealand. On the final day of competition riding in her main event the Individual Pursuit, Robson took a convincing win over Great Britain's Elinor Barker. Posting a time of 2:23.574, just over one second outside of Amy Cure's World Record of 2:22.499.

A year later Robson was again selected for Junior Worlds. The Australian team suffered a mechanical issue in the Team Pursuit qualifying but still posted a fast enough time to make it to the Bronze Medal ride. Teaming up with Lauren Perry, Macey Stewart and Elissa Wundersitz to take the Bronze Medal.

Her step up to senior competition came at the Oceania Championships in November last year. In her first IP over 3km Robson finished a promising 5th, missing out on a medal ride by half a second.

The news of her retirement at 18 came as a surprise after her hugely successful junior career. The decision by a multiple World, Oceania and Australian junior track Champion highlights the struggle female and track riders face. Below Kelsey explains why she decided to retire and looks back on her career.

Peloton Watch: How did you first get into cycling?

Kelsey Robson: I first got into cycling through my family. My dad and brothers both rode so I joined in the fun.

PW: Who was your biggest influence?

KR: My biggest influence? I have many influences I couldn't possibly decide who is my biggest one. To name a few...
Josie Tomic/bobridge, she's a huge inspiration for up and coming female cyclists. She helped pave the way for us girls and is a good example of how someone can spark change in the sport of women's cycling.
Caleb Ewan, being my boyfriend, he was always there to support me and pick up the pieces whenever things went horribly wrong. His experience and success made him a big influence to me.
My dad, he thinks he knows everything about everything but particularly when it comes to cycling, he gives very good advise and always motivated me to fulfil my potential.

PW: Why the decision to retire?

KR: My decision to retire was based on a lot of things. It's a sad reality that women don't make a good living from cycling and it has always been in the back of my mind particularly now that I'm 18 and need to be able to support myself in the near future. I also want to be able to travel with Caleb, I could never do that before because I did the track season and he did the road so our schedules always ran oppositely. At the end of the day it's about what you really want and I figured if I'm not 110% committed to this dream anymore then I shouldn't continue.

PW: Best memory?

KR: My best memory...there's so many! I would have to say riding up into my first senior TP team and taking out the national title with two girls who I idolise (Mel Hoskins & Bella King). I surprised myself that day.

PW: What do you see as your biggest accomplishment?

KR: My biggest accomplishment would still be winning the two world titles as an U19...I'll never ever forget that!

PW: Your last international event was the Oceania Championships and then you did State Championships. Did you know at the time those would be your last?

KR: I had no idea they would be my last competitions. Oceania's was about doing my first 3km IP and building for the future. States were also just part of the training program and it was all part of a very long term plan to get to where I needed to be for a shot at the Rio Olympics

PW: What will you miss most?

KR: I think I will miss that feeling you get when you know you've just won a race you've been thinking about for so long. I'll also miss seeing how everything comes together at the end of one of my long term plans...when all the training is done and the result is there exactly how you imagined it and maybe even better. I always loved that feeling of accomplishment.

PW: What is next for you?

KR: What's next for me is getting out and earning some dollars! I'm starting a personal training course soon as well because I want to utilise my passion for health and fitness. I'm not sure where that'll take me, could be the next Michelle Bridges who knows! I'm just excited to see what this new chapter in my life holds for me and I can only hope that I'll be happy.
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