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…