All it takes is one.
One big race.
One big performance. And everything changes.
On a small level all it took was me winning my first race in 2016. I proceeded to win the next 6 races I raced.
All it takes for Pros is to win one World Cup, and then they’re legit. And chances are they’ll win again, and again, and again. Because one of the best ways to win a race is to win previous races.
Confidence comes from our previous results. It can come from results in training, but it’s most pwerful from results in racing.
Pay attention to a Pro when they win their first race, or have a breakthrough performance. Look at the words they use. Usually they surprise themselves. They new they were good, but when they found themselves at the front at the end of the race they’re surprised.
But then pay attention to when they win again. A little bit less surprise. In fact, it’s common for them to set new expectations, higher than before. And when they don’t meet them they’re often dissappointed with results that previous to their breakthrough performance they would’ve been happy with.
Take Kate Courtney for example. In 2018 she won World Championships. She had yet to win an elete woman World Cup, and so to win World Championiships was shocking to the world, and to her. She then proceeded to win again, and again, and again, at the world cups the following year, securing the overall victory.
But then what happened? She started performing poorly post Covid, having rough 2021-2022 seasons. But were they actually that bad, or was it just that her expectations, and our expecations for her had dramatically changed after her victories?
To be fair, they weren’t great, but the decrease in performance was exaggerated due to her breakthrough performances at World Championshps and the World Cups that followed.
But regardless of a couple of rough years for Kate Courtney, all it took was one big race. One big win. One big performance.
And then she signed with a new time, her value as a cyclist increased, she started making more money, it was a breakthrough in every way for her.
I think that’s why so many racers line up again, and again, and again. We want breakthrough races. Life changing races. Obviously we can’t all win World Championships. But there are a lot of races out there. A lot of races to be won, by a lot of different people.
So go race.
Go line up.
Because all it takes is one.