Tag Archives: Specialized

Specialized + Jamaica

I have traveled to Jamaica the past 2 years for the Jamaican Fat Tyre Festival. I feel like I talk about Jamaica way too much? Maybe I do. haha. Anyway, when I went to Jamaica for the first time two years ago I found out that they were getting the first BMX track in the Caribbean and I thought that was so cool. Basically USA Cycling put out a call for proposal from Caribbean countries and Jamaica won. By winning, they got a course designer, builder and a start gate and in return they had to lease the land, get the dirt, equipment etc. This all cool and everything but there was one minor problem….no bikes. Jamaicans love their bikes A LOT. But riding those bikes on a BMX track is not a good idea for many reasons. Sooo 2 years ago a submitted a proposal to Specialized’s First Gear program to get some bikes to Jamaica and it was accepted!!! So fast forward to present time….it has all come together. The track, the materials, the bikes, the grand opening celebration. SOOO COOL. I wouldn’t miss it for the world so I made the trek down there to see the track in real life, see all the bikes getting loved and also see a pretty public stoke of many Jamaican government officials.

Oh and its Jamaica so I couldn’t come and not get my shred on right! :)

I just want to thank Specialized for donating bikes and gear, Pro-Tec for helmets, the Oracabessa Foundation + Goldeneye for helping to fund this project Simon Dunne and Jonathan Gosse <- none of this would have happend without this guy!!!!

Vermont & The Davison Family


I had such a great time hanging out in Vermont with the Davison family. The whole family has such a soft spot in my heart, they took me in like family and showed me what Vermont life is all about. I stayed there before and after races for a three week period so I really fell in love with everyone. The family is such a close unit, everyone lives together under one roof and they eat most meals together. That being said everyone is very much on their own program….but they are still so in tune with each other. I ate so much great food (maybe gained a few lbs. haha)…one great thing about the Davison house, is it always smells like fresh bread. Every night Lucia bakes fresh bread so you wake up to the smell of fresh baked bread to eat with your eggs and avocado in the morning. YUM. We went for some fun road rides, picked strawberries and made strawberry feasts, ate Jojo’s (aka. Greeny) fresh greens…that girls got a green thumb. If you ever get a chance to spend some time in Vermont, do it, it is gorgeous, everyone is so friendly and you will eat the freshest food in America.

I thought I took a photo of the Volvo’s but apparently I didn’t…the Davison Volvo’s are a sight to be seen, a whole driveway full of Volvos! ha. YES.


Little Bellas

One cool thing that I did while in Vermont was coach the Little Bellas for a day. Little Bellas is an organization developed by the Davison sisters with the goal being ‘to help young women realize their potential through cycling’. They have weekend camps, week-long camps and month long camps…and let me say, the girls love it. They get dropped off every morning and get to spend the day out on the trails, doing yoga and hanging out with all of their friends. These girls are young but they learn fast and there are some real shredders. I had a great time helping the girls to make some small improvements to their riding which made some pretty noticeable differences. It was also so fun to answer a huge array of questions and sign some posters and sweet Camelbak schwag. LOVED THIS!!

Lea makes the USA Olympic Team

Friday was a HUGE day for for Lea Davison.  And why was this day so important you might ask? USA Olympic Team selection.  Mountain Biking is in the Olympics but it is only the Cross Country discipline, not downhill.  A few years ago, going to the Olympics was a far fetched dream for Lea after she took a season off with major hip surgery.  This was horrible at the time, but like many things in life, it proved to be a blessing in disguise. The time off gave her time to reflect on who she was and what she really wanted, it also gave her a much needed mental break from compteting. Fast forward to 2012 and Lea Davison was right up there in the mix for a spot on the USA Olympic Team. This day was the culmination of many years of hard work, determinations, tears of sadness, tears of joy….it was a journey that included many people her family, friends, Jojo, Coach, community, sponsors….sit back and enjoy one of the coolest moments I have ever witnessed!

(going to the Olympics has always been a lifelong dream for me, and it was so incredibly amazing to watch her dream come true in an afternoon….soooo incredible)

Tour of California

The Tour of California rolled through Santa Cruz County yesterday. Pretty cool to have such a big event in my own backyard. I rode up to the Bear Creak KOM with a few boys to check it out. There were sooo many people…lawn chairs, BBQ’s  on the side of the road, lots of costumes, beer, wine, snacks….great scene. I was totally blown away by the guys  speed uphill…especially after nearly 100 miles. So gnarly. I have a whole new respect, seriously. Those guys are machines. There were also some guys that were just totally blown out, faces were pure pain…and they were still flying too.

Not only were they flying uphill but they were pinned on the downhills. You would think being a downhiller and all I would be able to descend on a road bike…not the case. It is freaking scary with cars and little tires. hahah. Last night when we were watching the Tour on TV we saw this guy descending Jameson Grade PINNED….foot out and everything. Crazy.Wayyy more gnarly than any downhill course.

Peter Sagan has won Stages 1 and 2 so far. He got a flat like 5 miles from the finish in Stage 1 and still came back to win. Yesterday he got in a wreck, got a flat and won again…digging deep.

Anyway, for all you California people, there is a good chance the Tour is coming to a town near you. Today is the start of Day 3 and it is 8 days long so there is still a bit to go. If you’ve got a chance I would definently recommend checking it out. You can find all the info here.

Women’s Ride, yes please

Our ladies ride day finally happened yesterday and it was a total blast. We had a great group and it was a gorgeous day.  We all parked at the bottom of Wilder Ranch and rode up through Wilder Ranch chatting and snacking on lots of Honey Stingers along the way. To end a rad ride we had Burgers and beer at Burger and everyone got some sweet stuff from Camelbak. Fun times. A huge shout out to Scotts Valley Cycle Sport for hosting the ride, getting more ladies on bikes and filling our hungry bellies. :)

Mark your Calenders: May 12th!

Soooo we attempted a Women’s Day in Santa Cruz back in March, but the skies decided to let loose for a week straight and we had to cancel. Specialized held a Women’s Day this past weekend…which ELLEN promoted, how cool is that? Well,  I was racing this past weekend so I had to pass on that specific ride. BUT third times a charm right? MAY 12th @ 12pm we are doing a women’s ride at Wilder Ranch in Santa Cruz, CA and I would loveee to see you there. Everyone is welcome…all ages, skill levels, speed, experience! It is just going to be a fun ride for everyone! It will be a great opportunity to ride some fun trails and meet some fun new friends and get some fun schwag. :) It’s going to be FUN.

You can sign up by sending me an email at katie@katieholden.com with May 12th in the subject line.

See you there!

What up No. 12

More Mountain Biking Videos

Did you all have a chance to watch the first round of the World Cup in Pietermaritzberg, South Africa? If not, you should. Sooo excited to this season to get started…Yeahhhh

I’m doing/going/seeing:

Coaching for the Santa Cruz Mountains Cycling Team – the NICA team that I am coaching this year

Putting in some elevation for the Specialized/Strava Climbing Challenge

Getting wet and wild in the mud


Tracey Hannah wins her first World Cup after a four year hiatus from racing, Junior World Champion Manon Carpenter gets her first elite World Cup podium…and a 2nd at that! Greg Minnaar wins in front of a home town crowd, Gwin 2nd. 16 year old Richie Rude gets 31st at his first World Cup…so proud. :)

Mark those calenders:

Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival
Sea Otter Classic

Just heard this song this weekend, love it…

Get on it

STRAVA. My latest obsession!

I love riding with friends because we push each other and talk smack along the way but…I also love riding solo too. The only thing about riding solo is I sometimes find it hard to push myself as hard…it is easy to back off when there is no one to chase or get wild with. Stava has given it some new life. You can ride hard on your own, go home, plug in and see where you stand…hopefully knocking some of your friends off the top. :) Basically Strava takes your ride and breaks it into segments (which everyone has made and you can make too) and you get ranked on those segments. You don’t have to do anything…I literally put it in my pocket, ride, come home and plug it in and all my segments have times and rankings. People are always pushing each other to go faster so once you set a fast time, it is never safe…gotta keep on it because someone will go faster. And then you have to figure out where you lost time…and where you can make up time. So fun. Give it some time…I think you will get addicted too…. :)

Starting this Thursday, Strava and Specialized have teamed up for A Classic Climbing Challenge by Specialized. This is pretty gnarly to be honest, but well worth the challenge. Basically you have to do 105,312 feet of climbing between March 15th and April 30th…you are going to be hurting. I am going to give the challenge a go but realistically with my upcoming racing and traveling it may not (is not) be so wise, we shall see. I think you should do it…

There are a few ways you can get on the Strava program..a) download the iPhone app or b) get a Garmin. I like the Garmin option because the readings are more accurate, particularly on trails (probably ok if you are riding road). Once you get the app or a Garmin it is super simple…you just ride and plug…and talk smack too.

Oh and just so you know…I am not sponsored by Strava, I just love it. 

Photo / Specialized

What up No. 11

There are always a million things going on at any given time so in order to streamline things, I have decided to do a regular feature which keeps you in the know. Every Monday you will be able to see where I am and what I am up to for the week, a few things I think are newsworthy, events I am not attending but I think you should know about, stuff you ought to mark on your calenders…and a little tune to get your Monday rolling!

If you have something you would like me to share, tell me, I want to hear from you!

I’m doing/going/seeing:

Attending the Right to Play auction and film screening of ESPN’s Right to Play at the Vogue Theatre in San Francisco. I also have an auction item up so come bid for a good cause.

Starting A Classic Challenge from Specialized. The sufferfest starts this Thursday… :(

Coaching our Santa Cruz Mountains Composite NICA Team at the Central Coast Classic.

Wearing green and hopefully drinking a green beverage for St. Patrick’s Day

Watching World Cup #1 Live on RedBull.TV

Leading a Women’s ride for Specialized’s National Women’s Ride Day at Wilder Ranch in Santa Cruz, CA


RedBull is streaming all World Cups Live AND Rob Warner is commentating = YESSSS.
Gwin(ing) won a national round in South Africa this past weekend on the World Cup track with quite a few of the World Cup boys in attendence. Tracey Hannah won it for the ladies…can’t wait to watch her kill it this year!
Matt Scoles and Sarah Atkins won the Oceania Championships in NZ
I got named to the US team today for Pan American Championships!

I can’t but you should:

CCCX race in Monterrey, CA

Mark those calenders:

Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival
Sea Otter Classic

Been loving this song…

Photo / Sterling Lorence : Sun Valley, ID

Right to Play

So I’ve got another cool event for you all…this time it’s for the whole family. On MARCH 14TH I will be attending the San Francisco premiere of ESPN’s Right to Play. Right to Play is an incredible organization that uses sport & play to better the lives of children around the world. Sport & play have changed my life for the better in an infinite number of ways…let’s pay it forward!

I have a put together a great package- Specialized Myka HT, gear, kit, and a day of coaching- that will be auctioned off during the night to raise money for a great cause. I am sure that there will be a lot of other great packages too. You will even get to listen to one of my childhood heroes, Summer Sanders speak…(I used to have pictures of her and Janet Evans on my wall with gold medals= awesome).

Mark those calenders…MARCH 14TH at The Vogue Theater in San Francisco.

Hope to see you there.

Interested in learning more about Right to Play? Can’t attend but want to donate?