If you ask Suzie how she describes herself, she’d say she’s “just a normal lady”, but we would beg to differ.
Suzie is a beautiful person, who is not only kind, but also has an infectious zest for life! We are also very lucky to have her as part of our MTB Direct family, in our Finance team.
She doesn’t let much stop her, on or off the bike. And is an amazing role model for her two daughters. Family is at the heart of all she does.
‘I'm always telling my girls they are able to do whatever they put their mind to, and it doesn't matter how old you are, if you want to do something, you can do it (within reason obviously).”
Suzie recently headed to the WA Gravity Girls Road Show. So we sat down to talk to her about the event and how she got into mountain biking.
How did you get into mountain biking?
I met a local lady through an old work colleague, who was looking at starting up a cycling academy. We got to talking about the types of riding she had done and mountain biking came up in the discussion. It sparked my curiosity and I said to her that I wouldn't mind giving it a go. Not long after, I was attending a Basic Skills Clinic for gravel riding. I soon realised that road and gravel road riding weren’t for me.
Shortly after that clinic, there was a WA Gravity Enduro Race at my local, Echidna Park. I went to watch and that was it! I knew right then, that’s what I wanted to do! From that moment on, I was ready to dive head first into mountain biking and eager to learn the skills I needed. As I got more confident, I wanted to do more and learn more. I learnt how to ride bigger drops and start taking on jumps.
In recent months I've joined the WA Gravity Girls community. This has given me exposure to riding some more downhill and the chance to explore more gravity orientated trails.
What is the WA Gravity Girls Road Show?
The WA Gravity Girls Roadshow is an event hosted by a non-profit group, WA Gravity Girls. Their goal is to get more females on bikes. Especially supporting women riding gravity trails, flow trails and supporting them with skills coaching and having fun whilst doing so! The Road Show runs over 8 days exploring different riding locations, skills and activities each day.
What made you take part in WA Gravity Girls Road Show?
After meeting Emily and a few of the other WA Gravity Girls at a Kalamunda Shuttle Day, I heard them talking about the Roadshow and all the plans they had for it. Knowing there was so much opportunity to meet other lady riders and to go and ride in so many different places. I just knew I had to be part of the stoke!
I'd only ridden my local trails and the "Welcome Women" trails at Echidna Park before the Roadshow event. So my exposure to different trails had been very limited. After riding all the locations at the Roadshow. I'd say I love technical trails the most, but I do thoroughly enjoy a good flow trail that you can let loose and have fun on too.
There is something pretty amazing about the atmosphere of an event that takes you all around the state, riding different trails, at different locations. And all with a rad bunch of female riders, who were buzzed to be out there! Kudos to Emily, Justin and the rest of the WA Gravity Girls team for organising and running such an epic event! I will be back for the next one!
How was your experience at the WA Gravity Girls Road Show?
It was epic! What's not to love about a massive group of women, all whooping and loving every minute of being out on their bikes?!!! Picking a favourite day is really hard to do as every day offered something different; new trails, new experiences and new people to meet. My favourite part of the event was building so many new connections with like minded women. As well as developing my riding skills and confidence on new types of trails. Just being part of it at all really!
What advice would you give other women who are thinking about taking part in mountain biking?
No matter what level you're at with your riding, get out there and join a community of supportive people like I did and you can't go wrong! Plus...Ride all the different types of trails you can...It really broadens your skills.
Don't be afraid to try something new! Everyone was a beginner or new to something at some point and honestly, what people care about the most is the heart you have! Not the skills you may or may not have.
I thoroughly recommend supporting your local mountain bike club and community! These people are the ones who keep the trails rideable, advocate for safe spaces for people to ride and enjoy the sport to ensure that generations to come learn the skills and knowledge to keep the MTB riding communities going. Kudos to them all.
Thanks to all the amazing photographers who capture women being epic on bikes.