Rachel rigs own ride to success



THE cycling Rockhampton's Rachel Chadwick does is riding a mountain bike to outrigger training on the Fitzroy River.

And she's more than happy to leave the road cycling to her brothers Glen, 29, and Mark, 27, and her dad Alan.

Rachel, 33, is surging ahead to newfound success on the water teaming with fellow Rocky Outrigger Canoe Club member Kate Watson to win the open women's OC2 title in the Wai Puhi series this year.

"It's a beautiful sport,'' said

Rachel, who trains both on the Fitzroy River and off the Capricorn Coast.

"You get to spend the day at the beach and the dolphins and turtles pop up ? I haven't seen a shark yet, I don't know what I'd do.''

Sharks aside, outrigging still beats her former cycling days. Rachel pedalled into road cycling when she was an 18-yearold, about a year after her brothers started in the sport.

"When I was racing I was too nervous and there wasn't a lot of women involved then.

"When Mark starting beating me I was out of there ? he was so short and chubby then and I thought if he could beat me I wasn't cut out for this.''

In 2002 Rachel answered the call when outrigging was recruiting more women paddlers. "They say you either love it or hate it ? I love it.''

Rachel is waiting for a new OC1 boat to arrive for next season and she just hopes she's "brave enough'' to complete races by herself.



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