KarryOn caught up with Karen Hill to chat about being an ambassador for Reho Travel and 2018 Commonwealth Games for cross country (xco) mountain biking.

 

How did you become involved with Reho Travel?

I met Karsten through an ambassador at lululemon. It was around the time he was preparing for Tour de Timor mountain bike stage race. After chatting with Karsten we discovered there was more in common than our love for riding bikes.

I am Torres Strait Island descent and Karsten spent time growing up on Thursday Island where my Nana is from.

IMG_4836

Karen Hill and Karsten Horne

I also really liked the fact Reho is certified B corp company.

I would like to set up a foundation that provides under privileged kids access to bikes. This would enable them to train and race and have a different outlet rather than drugs and alcohol. I think sport can play a massive positive role in a young person’s life.

 

How does being an ambassador work?

Reho travel fund my flights for my whole National series, Oceania championships and overseas trip. This is a massive contribution and without it, I would not be able to complete the series. Which included races in Mt Taylor (Vic), Canberra (ACT), Perth (WA), Thredbo (NSW) and Toowoomba (QLD).

Oceania champs are in Queenstown, NZ this year and Reho are getting me there as well as to Cairns for the UCI world cup.

IMG_4838

In return I mention Reho through my social media accounts and website.

I will be wearing the Reho logo on my cycling kit. With a predominantly female industry I hope to be able to inspire people to lead healthier happier lives.

 

What are your goals?

I am aiming to qualify for the 2018 Commonwealth Games for cross country (xco) mountain biking.

To achieve this I will race our National series here in Australia and head to Europe each year to race the UCI xco mountain bike world cup series (which can be viewed on Redbull TV).

IMG_4840

I will be leaving at the start of May this year for my first trip. I will be doing a race in the UK, Germany, France, Czech Republic and Cananda.

 

How did you get into mountain biking?

I have been riding and racing cross country for just over 3 years now. I have always been involved in sports from a young age with karate and netball. In my later teen amateur boxing and then onto triathlon.

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 11.16.03 am

I became involve in mountain biking after my local bike shop joked I should try riding a real bike (and not a triathlon one). So I did. And the rest is history, as they say.

I have set myself some big goals with my racing. I know I have a long way to go and a lot to learn but I believe in living a life that sets your soul on fire. So that’s what I am doing.

 

How do you support your racing?

All of my racing is self-funded. However, I have partnered with some great companies that help me out with flights, bikes, coaching, massage, bike parts as well as sports nutrition.

Reho Travel J, Rocky Mountain Bikes Australia, Blush Images, Chroma Contractors, Pedal lab, Impact massage, FE Sports and Bont cycling shoes.

I have set up a donate link on my website (karenhillracing.com) to help cover the costs of international racing licence, race entries, mechanical support and accommodation.

 

What do you do outside of riding?

I have completed 2 degrees at Uni; Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Therapy and Bachelor of Science Honours (1st class – meaning I’m really smart). I must give many thanks to the Rotary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island scholarship through Balwyn Rotary club, that helped get me through my undergraduate degrees.

I now run an online nutrition business – Karen Hill Nutrition; targeted at athletes to help achieve optimal performance through nutrition. I decided to start an online business so I could work from anywhere in the world.

Do you think the travel industry needs more brand ambassadors like Karen Hill?