Name: Maura Kinsella
Hobbies: You mean besides the strenuous life as a Vanderkitten Covergirl? Well, I actually enjoy many hobbies outside of cycling as I strive to be the most balanced extremist that I can be. My hobbies include but are not limited to: studying for Biology exams, crazy dance parties, playing the guitar, pretending I’m Nicki Minaj, entering rap competitions in East St. Louis and then chickening out at the very last second, raising chickens, hiking, making lists, playing Words with Friends (find me!), grocery shopping, making googly eyes at hot professors, fixing flats (just kidding – that’s not very fun), and making bean juice (AKA coffee).
Non cycling-related action/ adventure/ memory: At the end of the season this past summer, my roommate sent me off on this gorgeous hike in the Santa Cruz Mountains. However, unbeknownst to my friend and I, this hike wound up being a tough 5 hours. I’m usually not one to bonk but we’d anticipated a much shorter hike and, hence, had only brought a total of two water bottles and four AussieBites (found at a CostCo near you) to split between the two of us– i.e. definitely not enough. Nevertheless, we surveyed all that Big Basin has to offer and literally climbed a waterfall, strode through innumerous redwoods, and found ourselves in the middle of the ‘desert’ – all in one hike. By the end, we were so glycogen-deprived that we were pretty slaphappy and seriously thought we were the funniest people alive… Dave Chapelle’s got nothin’ on us. The next day I was so sore that I could barely get out of bed (as I hadn’t walked over a mile in about 9 months). Needless to say, my roommate will never hear the end of it.
First Bike Race: My very first bicycle race was in late February of 2009 for the local junior team, Mesa Cycles. I rode with the Cat 4 women at a race in Columbia, Missouri aptly named “Froze Toes.” I crashed three times… literally. I could not stop from taking myself out. However, much to the peloton’s horror, after each brief love affair with the pavement, I hammered and hoofed my way back to eventually win the race! Not more than 24 hours later, a blog-post was written about me in which the author nicknames me “Kaboom… demonstrat[ing] the resilience of a Sherman tank”. I’d have probably laughed more if I hadn’t been so horrendously mortified at the time (but c’mon… LMFAO now). Moral of the story? There’s hope, gals, that even if you can’t ride a straight line to save your life, that you, too, will one day be able to race in the biggest Pro/1/2 races in the nation.
End Note: Much to my chagrin, I have been persuaded to provide the entire said blog-post for your entertainment purposes only: http://www.teamrev.org/archives/570
When did you first hear about Vanderkitten? I think that I first heard about Vanderkitten at my first race in California, an Early Bird in January 2010 where I saw my current teammy, Starla Teddergreen, decked out in a fresh kit (obvi, VK). I always joke with her now about how intimidated I was of her (since, if you know her, you know she’s the sweetest pixie ever), and how tough and “kick-ass” she looked. I was envious to say the least. Then, I did a little research on the Vanderkitten Focus Cycling team and the brand, and I became secretly (I was on a rival team, after all) obsessed. Now I’m stoked to be Pretty in Kitty.
What does it mean to you to be a part of Vanderkitten? While Vanderkitten-Focus is about winning races and striving to be the strongest team that we can be like every other NRC team, another essential component that Vanderkitten is trying to permeate across the nation that the brand is more than just a cycling team, VK is a way of life. I think that in a world where the sports market is still so dominated by men, women are often an after-thought. At VK, women are the one and only priority, period. Therefore, being apart of this brand reflects not only my athletic abilities and potential but also the way I want to live my life day in and day out. We represent a revolution in opportunity, community, and protecting the fun in sport. Vanderkitten brings out the “e.d.g.y.” of women’s cycling and appeals to women everywhere itching to unfurl their competitive nature. Vanderkitten… it’s who I am. Meow!