Chocolate Foot

Putting our best foot forward

Women's MTB Development Team Blog

Newcrest Orange Challenge - 170km road ride

RubyAt the end of last year, while helping a friend work out which size bike she should buy, I discovered that despite being under the impression that my road bike is a medium frame, it is actually a small. From that moment on, I felt like I was too cramped on my bike and that (for the sake of my riding position) I should probably get a new bike!

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Jet Black 24 Hour

Rach and PipI was really chuffed when young gun Rach asked me to race with her at this event and as soon as I’d said yes, I booked in a weekend to do a recce lap of Awaba. I struggle with confidence on the mountain bike, especially if I don’t know the trail, which makes it really hard to go all out in a race situation and I’ve often found that I’m held back by my lack of confidence rather than fitness, which is really frustrating. On one hand, I can ride Manly Dam, which is pretty techy so it should follow that most XC courses are less technical than the trail I ride most weeks, so I should be able to race them without an issue...  

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Top tips that got me through my first solo lap race

pippa 5hr coondooI had signed up for my first solo lap race and on the drive to Nowra (in the awesome white bike van with Fi and team manager Joe) it suddenly dawned upon me that I hadn't really thought about the logistics of the race. Should I wear a hydration pack? Should I have water or Perpetuem on my bike? How often should I eat? Should I stop? Who would refill my bottles? I casually asked a couple of questions and (after picking their brains for about half an hour) I felt more prepared and ready to race. 

Having survived my first solo lap race, here are my top tips!

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XCO Nationals Rounds 1 & 2

XCO2 rachel cookWhat a way to kick off a season of racing! The first week of January came around faster than ever before… On the 28th December I returned home from an amazing month of trekking and volunteering as a physiotherapist in Nepal. With coming home from Nepal, I was literally questioning myself – where do I want to go with all my riding?

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First race and ride back after a major crash!

robyn trish 350Injury is an almost unavoidable part of the equation of doing a sport, whether it be from over-use or through accidents. My most recent one was unfortunately the latter, a gentle road ride with a friend derailed by an errant dog, which not only injured my hand and back but claimed the frame of my lovely S-Works Amira as well!

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Cancer: The Rocky Road to Recovery

tanya chamberland montWhen we started our adventure 12 months ago, each Chocolate Foot team member had a pretty clear idea of why they had applied to be part of this development team. For some, stretching their physical capabilities and for others getting better at a challenging discipline. All very personal, all admirable.

I, on the other hand, had reasons that were neither as well articulated, nor as clear cut.

Read more: Cancer: The Rocky Road to Recovery

SCUM 3hr Dusk to Dark

SCUMWith just about every race postponed on the weekend due to rain, I came across the SCUM 3hour Dusk to Dark! Having never done a solo, timed loop race like this, I was a little nervous as to how I’d hold up, but went for it anyway!

I drove down with my lovely Mum to just south of Nowra, where there is an abundance of trails. The day was absolutely gorgeous, so I was really looking forward to getting out there and having a bit of fun!

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JetBlack 12 Hour

rachel cook 12hr chopsA 12 hour race is something that I’ve always wanted to complete and I knew it would be tough, and would involve a little bit of training. Thanks to Coach Chops and a few weeks of training set out for me on “Today's Plan”, I was ready to go for the weekend. It turned out that Coach Chops, James Lamb, stepped up to race with me and brought along one of his friends which meant we were in with a team of three.

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Evocities MTB Series – Wagga Wagga

Cook and the BakerWith a week of rain leading into round 4 of the Evocities series, it was very touch and go. Regular updates through the fantastic organisers of the race made sure everyone was up to date on track conditions, the rain falling, and eventually we received the news that it was going ahead! I was so excited, and completely over the moon that it was on - as it meant another weekend away riding a bike and having some fun, and an excuse to have a break from uni!

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SCUM Coondoo 5 hour marathon


For those not in the know, SCUM stands for South Coast United Mountain Bikers and after the sad news that Chocolate Foot would no longer be running their Singletrack Mind lap race at Nowra, SCUM stepped in and put on their own event. The Singletrack Mind event in Nowra was the first event that I attended after finding out that I’d made it onto the Chocolate Foot Women’s MTB Development team and the first time that some of us met. For this reason, this race and trail holds a special place in my heart and when I found out there was a race on, I was really excited! This excitement slightly diminished when I discovered that the race was a 5 hour as I was really keen to race solo and would have preferred a slightly shorter introduction to solo lap racing but 5 hours was on offer so what can you do?!

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