Ask @cassiecameron:

Cassie Cameron
Latest answers

are you riding at the moment?

I've been back on my bike for about three weeks now. I've had a lot of time off because of a herniated disc in my lower back, but it's coming right now so I'm just starting to get the legs going again.

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average hours per week?

It varies depending on what stage I'm at with training/racing. But usually around 16-22 hours per week.

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hey

Well, hello there.

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Why have you been crashing?

Oh shoosh, Luke Ockerby.

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your trip so far looks so amazing omg!

It has been quite the experience! Less than three weeks to go now til I head home. How time flies..

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Do i know you?

I do believe we've met.

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who do you miss most from nz?

Definitely my family. I hate being away from them. I'm such a sook when it comes to homesickness! haha.

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list your top 5 favourite boys in NZ cycling

Haha impossible. There are too many good eggs to limit it to 5.

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well done for your 20 hour ride! thats amazing! how many km's did you guys do?

Thanks! It was hard work. I ended up doing 24 hours, and the last 14 hours was solo. Just under 600km all up.

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Is Vanderkitten a good race team? :)

From what I have heard it is an awesome team! Sophie Williamson would be the one to ask about it, as she is in the team this year. There's a link to her blog on mine. :)

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that is soo cool how you got to talk to the children!!! your my hero!

Haha, thanks. It was an awesome experience, I enjoyed it so much. It's not often that I see the kind of enthusiasm that children have, it's just so uplifting.

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what team do you race for? :)

At the moment, I am racing for a Benchmark Series team sponsored by Altherm Window Systems. Our team is made up mostly of track riders, which makes it pretty difficult for us at times! (Particularly up the hills). So far we have only competed at one of the Benchmark races, where one of our girls (Jaime Nielson) finished up 2nd, and we have another race in early May. I am sponsored by Trek NZ so I usually race in their kit.

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can you please explain how a criterium race works?

A criterium is a short and fast road race around a circuit usually less that one km around. They're held over a certain time (say, 30 minutes + 3 laps) and sometimes have sprint primes for prizes or money on certain laps throughout it. It is the same as a road race in that whoever crosses the line first wins. They can be pretty sketchy sometimes, depending on the technicality of the course (sharp corners etc) and the speed of the race, but are definitely one of my favorite races.

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how do you get onto the NZ team? is it like a qualifying race or something?

Generally you have to put on good performances consistently over a number of races to be selected for a NZ road team. For U17 and U19, the Te Awamutu and Rotorua tours, as well as club road nationals, (which are all held around April) are used as selection races. For track, it's based on Nationals and sometimes Oceania champs.

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what subjects did you take in year 13?

I took NCEA Level 3 Biology and Chemistry in Year 12, and Accounting, Calculus, English, Physics and Chemistry Scholarship in Year 13. It was pretty hard to keep up with it all when I was training as much as I was, and being away from school a lot of the time. I left school to start correspondence in Term 3 which made it a lot easier to fit it all in and take work with me.

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what age were you when you started to focus on cycling?

I started at the beginning of year 7 and did it for nearly a year just for fun, so I was thirteen when I took it up seriously.

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did you or do you play any other sports?

I used to do quite a bit. I did cross country, athletics, soccer, even rugby for a bit haha. I did competitive gymnastics for three or four years, which gave me a good head start for cycling because I came out of it with a lot of strength, flexibility and discipline with training. I was never really any good at anything though. Just one of those kids that made up numbers. I always tried hard though! Haha

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im just getting into cycling, i've done it for about one year and i want to progress like make it onto a team and then head for the Olympics as future goals, have you got any advice??

Awesome :) my advice would be to remember that making it to the highest level in anything requires an enormous amount of time, work and perseverance, but that it is achievable through small and steady steps. It won't happen straight away. The first step would be to get out there and train and race hard (that is, train hard when you are supposed to; rest and recovery is just as important) and to learn which races are most important for you to excel in (ie selection races/tours, nationals etc) and to find someone to help you in peaking for those races. Set goals for yourself all the time so that you know where you are headed. But the most crucial part of cycling is the training itself. There is no shortcut to getting faster. The better your preparation, the harder you will be to beat.

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when you go for training rides, do you go by yourself or with a few people?

Usually by myself. Mostly because there aren't a great deal of riders in Wanganui to go with. But I also prefer training by myself when I have specific sessions, because its a lot easier to ride at the intensity that I need to when I'm alone. It does make for some pretty boring days on the bike, but I always take my iPod along to keep me company.

I join in on the club bunch rides once or twice a week too, which is a nice change from the usual solo dolo :)

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on your rest days do you swim or is it a day with completely no training?

Usually no training at all. Especially if I've had a big few days of training, it's important to really use the day to recover. I quite often use my rest days to do a bit of core work though.

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what sort of bike did you start off with? :)

My first ever bike was a three tonne (or there abouts) steel Apollo that I hired from the club. Haha it was a bit of a task getting it up hills. I bought a carbon giant bike about a year after I started riding and still have it. It felt like such a machine after dragging the Apollo around all that time! haha

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if its raining on a training day do you train in the rain? or do you train on rollers/wind trainer?

Unless the weather is dangerously bad, I usually go out and train in it no matter what. I actually enjoy training in the rain occasionally. But if you do that, it's important to wrap up warm so you don't end up sick from it. Track's a different story at home because its uncovered, so if it the weather packs up I usually hit the erg instead. Everyone loves a bit of erg ;)

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do you have a coach? how much does your coach contribute to your training? :)

Yep, I'm coached by Gary Anderson. He pretty much completely calls the shots with what I do (taking into account my own opinion in some areas, i.e which races I am aiming to peak for, what sort of sessions I think work best, how I am feeling on particular days etc, and tailors my program to suit it.) I went through a stage of not having a coach, and made my own program, but I found it a lot more difficult to get out and do it. Probably because I wasn't convinced that I knew what I was doing with it. So for that reason I think it's important to have a coach, or just have someone with a bit of knowledge draw up a program for you, so you feel like you are on more a guided path than doing it alone.

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do you do any other training? like at the gym or swimming?

Not really. It's important to do a bit of core work so that you're stable on the bike, particularly in pursuit/time trial position. And I should be doing more of it! I'm a bit slack haha. I love doing other things in my time off, like running, swimming, mountain biking etc just to mix it up a bit, but when I'm training for an important race I pretty much keep all my training specific.

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Video Response- Could you act like you're inflating up like the blueberry girl on Willy Wonka??

I won't need to act, with easter coming up.

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