Olympic Gold Medalist Kristin Armstrong (Cervélo TestTeam) and USA Cycling are combining forces to back the Kristin Armstrong Cycling Academy, a junior development camp this summer for women of racing ages 15 to 18.
Sponsored by USA Cycling, the camp will be held in Boise, Idaho, from July 14–19, and will provide licensed riders with the additional opportunity to race alongside Armstrong before a crowd of thousands at the 23rd Annual Twilight Criterium in downtown Boise.
The new camp was developed for women who have some racing experience and are looking to improve their skills. It offers an opportunity to discover what it means to be a professional cyclist.
"In the United States, during the year you turn 19, you go from racing with your 15- to 18-year-old peers to racing with 19- to 35-year-old pros. It can be a shock, and if not prepared, young riders feel like they've been thrown to the wolves. (American) cycling loses a lot of promising female riders in this process," said Armstrong.
"My coaches and I want to have a hand in helping young women really advance through a more focused training program, like the one that helped me realize my Olympic dream. My goal, and I think it's realistic, is to see a graduate of the Kristin Armstrong Cycling Academy bring home the gold for US Cycling."
Armstrong has worked with youth since she was in her mid-20s, and says she's uniquely qualified to help girls bridge the gap from junior to senior racing.
The camp will offer a mix of classroom sessions, racing clinics, and off-the-bike lifestyle tips tailored to young women. The registration fee of US$1,250 will include lodging, meals, daily instruction and social opportunities. Twilight Criterium race entry is not included.
"The Kristin Armstrong Academy is an ideal program that will guide aspiring young women as they attempt to make the transition from a successful junior career to the elite ranks," said USA Cycling director of athletics and Armstrong's coach Jim Miller." As an Olympic champion, Kristin will inspire, educate and support dozens of future world-class athletes with these efforts as part of a tremendously valuable initiative designed to ensure the future success of American women."
All riders must hold a valid 2009 USA Cycling annual license to participate.
For more information, visit www.kristinarmstrongacademy.com.