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Foreman-Mackey’s successes propel her to next level with new challenges awaiting her athletically and academically

A graduate student at the University of Toronto, the national road race champion and a medalist at the track world championships is heading to Qatar for the road world championships

Foreman-Mackey at the 2016 Canadian track championships

Have a look at Annie Foreman-Mackey’s 2016 season. In February, the Kingston native won a bronze medal at the track world championships in the individual pursuit, then she got selected as the alternate for the Olympic women’s team pursuit squad that took home bronze from Rio and in June she won the elite women’s Canadian national road racing title in Ottawa.

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Foreman-Mackey then signed a contract with the UCI registered American team Twenty16-Ridebiker and will represent Canada at the road world championships in Doha, Qatar in October. She hasn’t neglected her life beyond the bike either, writing the MCAT in August and continuing this fall her graduate studies at the University of Toronto in the health sciences program.

Annie Foreman-Mackey
Foreman-Mackey celebrates her national road championship victory

Foreman-Mackey rode two events over the weekend at the Canadian track championships in Milton, Ont. decked out in her new team gear. Following the race, she spoke in her usual cheerful and enthusiastic manner about a wide range of topics from worlds to what she looks forward to in the off-season.

The track races at nationals were used as a part of a training block in preparation for the team time trial and road race at worlds. “I am making it work,” Foreman-Mackey said of juggling the life of an elite athlete and student. “I am in classes for the fall term and luckily my professors have been very good about giving me a little bit of flexibility. It’s a little bit of a balancing act.”

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For the winter semester, Foreman-Mackey is on the search for a placement in California that will afford her the flexibility to manage her academic requirements with training and her Twenty16 race program. The step-up to a UCI team gives her the opportunity to complete a full road schedule instead of splitting her focus on two disciplines as she did in 2016. “This was one of my goals I was gunning for this year and I wasn’t sure it was going to happen,” Foreman-Mackey said of her move to a bigger team. “I’m really excited to have a bit of a change and new challenges.”

Foreman-Mackey wins bronze at the 2016 track world championships
Foreman-Mackey wins bronze at the 2016 track world championships

With the experience of the Olympic selection under her belt she is prepared for her cycling career to progress to the next level, “The Cyclery-Opus has been such an important part of my development as a cyclist. It is such a great group of girls,with amazing staff so it’s obviously really sad to move on. Their ultimate goal is to get riders on to the next rank so I think it’s a testament to the program to see riders moving to bigger teams and bigger race calendars. I’ll still be connected and part of the family,” Foreman-Mackey said of her time with the Ottawa based team she has been with since 2013.

Another acknowledgement of her progress in 2016 is her selection for worlds, “It will be my first road world championships. I have never been to that part of the world, I have head it is very hot,” she adds with a laugh. “It will be a great learning experience.”

Then, it will be back to classes and for some time off the bike, “The off season is always a really great place to look back and reflect on the year. It’s a good time to realize that you have achieved some short term and even some long term goals within the last season. it’s definitely motivating moving forwards and I know it will do me some good to take a break before going into 2017.

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“I know that school will fill up most of my time but I am looking forward to doing some trail runs, mountain biking, hiking and maybe some cross country skiing if there is any snow,” said of what she looks forward to doing in the off season.

After missing out on the chance to represent Canada in Rio, Foreman-Mackey is not yet ready to make the 2020 Tokyo Olympics her next big target despite being committed to the sport for the next little while, “I haven’t made any big decisions for four years down the line. At this point I will keep reevaluating over time, for now I am in it and going for it.”