Why you should ride with Emily Collins in Girona

Sarah Maclachlan

Feb / 9 / 2018

Emily Collins is a former TEAM TIBCO-SVB and Wiggle High 5 pro cyclist. Currently on a break from competitive racing, yet you will still find Emily pedalling around the roads of Girona.

I took the opportunity to sit down with Emily and find out more about her; from the starting point of her career to her most memorable professional career moments and find out what she loves about Girona.

As a passionate cyclist and advocate for women’s cycling, combined with her extensive experience and knowledge, makes Emily the perfect host and coach for our Girona Women's Camp!

SM: You are currently back home in New Zealand for the winter. It must be nice to catch up with friends and family over the festive period?

EC: After many years as a cyclist racing abroad, it has always been a tradition to follow the sun and head home for the Christmas period and the tradition goes on. Nothing like a Christmas Day summer BBQ...

Although a treat catching up with family and friends - Girona, our lifestyle and friends there are always missed when away.

SM: What are your plans over the next coming months ?

EC: I have actually just touched down in Melbourne and will be starting a stint of work with Specialized. It's a nice opportunity to get involved with such an established brand within the cycling world - sure to be a great learning experience and hopefully a bit of fun along the way!

SM: Best of luck at Specialized! Let's start with an obvious question, how did you get involved in road biking ?

EC: I was a lover of most sports growing up and cross country running was a favourite. So when my high school started a cycling team, I was straight in there with the intention of having a crack at triathlon. Several races later, it was all about the bike!

School cycling in NZ is massive and impressively continues to grow each year. It was a great scene to get involved with and a neat way to get into the sport.

SM: What is the most memorable moment of your pro cycling career ?

EC: I had just joined the Wiggle Honda team in 2013 - my first professional team and my first introduction to the daunting European Spring races . I was fearless and hungry for a result and came away with the team's first win at the Omloop het Hageland in Belgium and in a bunch sprint - much to my own and my stronger “thighed” competitors surprise ! It was a special victory and a memory I will keep.

Above: Emily Collins claiming Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling first UCI victory of the season by taking out the Omloop het van Hageland - Photo credit : WIggle High Five

SM: You must have ridden in some pretty cool places across the globe .. any favourites ?

EC: The Dolomites would have to be number one.

SM: Living in Europe’s cycling Mecca, Girona, must mean you are never without a riding partner. Who do you normally ride with ?

EC: Something special about Girona is that there is always someone to ride with, no matter what day or time! Since retiring from competition, I am more about riding for enjoyment and less about intensity and intervals...some days longer than others when out exploring the Girona roads .

I have a great circle of 'cycling' friends in Girona - some social riders, others professional and former professional who I can always call on for a pedal, so long as coffee is involved !

I also enjoy the Bike Breaks Thursday shop ride - run every Thursday of the year at 10am and almost every week a different mix of people...from locals to visitors, cycling enthusiasts and professional riders . Most importantly, it's a very social ride and nice to have the option to do each week.

SM: What is your favourite ride in Girona?

EC: I was a real creature of habit when race training and tended to stick to the same traditional routes a little too often - usually to suit certain training sessions and intervals . Now that those days are behind me, I'm enjoying exploring and 'just riding' the Girona roads. One of the best 'just riding' rides is the Coast loop, which takes you from Girona out to the CostaBrava and around 100km in length. The stretch of road along the coast is pretty phenomenal and won't get old anytime soon!

SM: That's the penultimate ride for the Girona Women's tour, it sounds as if we are in for a real treat! What aspect of the women’s tour this April are you looking forward to?

EC: Since I started cycling, it's been fantastic to see more and more women get into cycling - of all different levels and motives . I'm excited to meet new riders, show them the amazing Girona and share some of my experiences and knowledge with them.

SM: For all the women riders across the globe what would be your top tip ?

EC: Don't take things too seriously out on the bike - it's about the balance. Most importantly - make sure you fit in time to ride with friends, have coffee stops and laugh when you can.

SM: Thanks, for taking the time to talk with me Emily and sharing your passion with us. I look forward to riding with you in Girona this April.. especially the Costa Brava loop!

If you are looking to improve your bike skills and confidence , gain some pre season fitness and meet like minded women, all while riding on the beautiful sunny roads of Griona..then this is the ultimate women's camp for you!

Click here to book and view full trip details. And be sure to sign up for our newsletter below for more stories like this or click here to check out our blog.