We recently had the opportunity to chat with Carolyn Defoore aka CD4 of Team Athlete Architecture p/b Hyperthreads. Carolyn has climbed quickly up the ranks to a Cat 2. Along with her strong teammates, she continues to embrace the Texas racing scene to the fullest. We enjoyed the chance to get to know her more.
Cantu Wheels: When you began riding, what was it about the bike that appealed to you most?
CD4: I started riding with my dad when I was 13 or so, and I just loved getting to spend that time with him. I would constantly ask him if we were going 20 miles per hour!
Cantu Wheels: As you progressed into the sport, were there any key individuals that influenced your growth as a cyclist?
CD4: There have been several key individuals that influenced my growth as a cyclist, too many to name here, but I'm grateful for all of them. The first century I ever rode was also a very fateful day... Eryn Wike introduced me to Kelly Barrientes, now my team manager and best friend - who has shown me unwavering support on the bike and in life. And of course, my dad has always been and always will be my best supporter.
Cantu Wheels: What's the racing and riding scene like in Austin?
CD4: Racing and riding in Austin, Texas... well, spoiled is the word that comes to mind first. We have the best weekly criterium series in the U.S. [The Driveway], there is a group ride every day of the week for every skill level, plenty of hills to make strong legs, and a city government that is dedicated to investing in its bicycle friendly infrastructure. Cycling is a huge part of Austin's culture.
Cantu Wheels: What event or race are you looking forward to most this season?
CD4: I turned 35 this year, so I have my heart set on Master's Nationals in Augusta, GA. I'll be competing in the road race and criterium in just a few weeks.
Cantu Wheels: What is your most memorable day on the bike?
CD4: I have so many memorable days... but I'll describe one of my favorites from a couple years ago. I did a weekend trip to Leakey, Texas with Velo View Bike Tours, and I can't even imagine a more perfect day... Incredible views, incredible hills, wildly fast descents, all followed by cooking dinner, laughing and staying up late recovering in the hot tub, drinking beers under the stars... I wish I had more days like these.
Cantu Wheels: Do you have any favorite pro riders you like to watch?
CD4: I can't say I have a favorite rider, but if I've had the privilege of racing next to them, my ears perk up a little more at their results. Coryn Rivera's win at Flanders is probably the most recent result that's given me goosebumps to hear about.
Cantu Wheels: Favorite location to train?
CD4: I have a special relationship with the hills in Lost Creek, just west of Austin, specifically Barton Creek. When I was just starting to race, these were the hills that challenged me, got me strong, and gave me the confidence to get out there and compete.
Cantu Wheels: Best advice for beginners interested in bike racing?
CD4: Don't let anyone else define what you can be good at. Define that for yourself.