2019 Fort Follies Team
The Fort Follies are a group that seeks to empower women and women-identifying individuals in the Fort Collins area to be active and impactful members of our cycling community through riding, racing, and philanthropy. We strongly believe in a positive, supportive, and inclusive team, suited for women and women-identifying individuals of all abilities and disciplines.
Laura Aguirres: My name is Laura and I am originally from Argentina. My excitement for cycling started riding the beautiful mountains in Marin County, California and increased when I moved to Fort Collins a few years ago.
Tiffany Ankrum: I have been riding for about 14 years. I used to race more than I do now. I am a cycling coach with Ciclismo Youth Foundation as well as being on the board of directors. It’s great to be part of a group of women that are so passionate about cycling in all its forms.
Emily Breese: Cycling has been my refuge since I was a kid. My dad would take me on long bike rides through our local college campus, and those are some of my fondest memories. Next year, I hope to train for some road cycling event. I have previously trained for two century rides, where I raised money for a cancer hospital in St. Louis (my home town). My true love is road cycling, but I have been trying to conquer my mountain biking fears recently, and could use a push. I just want to ride my bike with some bad ass women in Fort Collins
Jane Brewer: I grew up in the heart of NYC, so the most I rode bikes growing up was pedaling my sweet Schwinn banana seat bike around in circles on the pavement. After a move to Crested Butte in 2002, I really started to love cycling and humbly learned how to mountain bike there. It was hard not to fall in love with riding singletrack when some of the most incredible trails are right outside your doorstep. Cycling (mostly the crashing part) inspired me to my current career as a NeuroStructural Chiropractor. My husband and I moved to Fort Collins in early 2015 and are having fun exploring the trails around Northern CO!
Cynthia Brown: I started racing road bikes in 1984 when I was in college. I have trained and raced off and on since then. I have raced with Team Rio Grande since 2006 with a couple of years off. I was out of the country for a month during the summer of 2018, thus, did not race. But I plan to race again locally in 2019. Long rides with friends is one of my favorite thing to do and look forward to opportunities to ride with the Follies.
Kaitlyn Brunk: Hi I’m Kaitlyn! I am 28 years old, a veterinary student at CSU, and newly married! I was born and raised in Colorado so nature and outdoor activities keep my heart beating! I am new to the sport of mountain biking. My first ride was April of 2017. Summer of 2018 was when I really began to understand and enjoy the sport. I am looking to meet new friends and improve my knowledge and skills on the bike!
Celeste Cannon: I was nine years old and had spent 6 weeks with training wheels before I finally learned to ride a bike. I will never forget that feeling of flying and the freedom my bike gave me! I’ve been mountain bike racing since 2004, working my way up from beginner to Pro over the years. In 2018, I was XC State Champ and am hoping to repeat this year. I am also a founding member of the Sugar Beets, Fort Collins’ only women-only expert/pro bike racing team. I love helping others get into the fun and excitement of racing!
Heidi Carlson: Mom of 5 grown children swam in college did triathlons and continue to run climb bike hike anything outdoors. Love outdoors sports and being around others that love to be involved in outdoor sports.
Sarah Carney: Backpacking on a bicycle? Yes please. I got into cycle touring through some amazing friends and went on some unforgettable adventures. One thing lead to another and the number of bikes started accumulating in the garage. Mountain biking seems to have found a special place in my life right now. My job as a radiographer keeps me inside all day everyday so the best part of my day, the part that keeps me sane, is getting out on a ride or tooling around on a pump track.
Danielle Clark: My name is Danielle Clark and I started mountain biking about a year and a half ago. I didn’t grow up around mountains, but I sure am excited to get out more this upcoming season and shred some trails! I have had spinal fusion surgery twice to correct my scoliosis (curvature of the spine) but I can’t wait to get on my bike and show others that nothing can stop you from doing what you love! This season I want to build my confidence on trails as well as work on my endurance. Can’t wait to get out and ride in gorgeous Colorado!
Valerie Collins: I started riding in 2007 both road and mountain, but my love for riding dirt and gnarly trails lead me towards the dirt side of riding. I did some racing Initially , but without a steady support system , that fell by the wayside. I turned to just improving my dirt skills. In 2014, I decided to give riding a break, but in 2016 rediscovered my love for riding. Now with a steady support system in place I am turning my eye towards Nationals in Winter Park for 2019, and after that hope to try my hand at bike packing. Hopefully on my obsession trail: Colorado Trail.
Jennifer Cram: I have been in love with the great outdoors and riding my bike since I was a little girl. I started mountain biking just about a decade ago while living in Summit County. I jumped right into racing with the local Summit Mountain Challenge series and met some great people. I have had the opportunity to participate in a variety of races out west and in my home state of MI from 24 hours of Moab to the Iceman Cometh. I am hooked! I recently moved to Fort Collins and am excited to learn new trails, meet new people to ride with and be a part of such a strong cycling community.
Molly Cropp: I started cycling about 4 years ago. Initially I thought I liked road racing but I’ve quickly realized that I’m not a roadie. I’m trying to transition now to the mountain bike and we’ll see how that goes. I’m hoping to do more mountain bike races next season and to get on my bike in general. But I do also plan on doing running races, so hopefully I can fit it all in!
Jessica Crouch: I grew up riding horses but quickly figured out bicycles are much easier to house in city limits. I really fell in love with bicycles after several amazing self-supported bike tours, and took a shot at racing cyclocross in 2008 and fell headfirst in love with racing after that. After relocating from Nashville to Fort Collins, racing and riding has taken a bit of a backseat to home renovations and a new job (letterpress printer for Wolverine Farm) but I still love riding and always looking for fun folks to ride with.
Lisa Cunningham: I have lived in Fort Collins since 2008. I am a very active stay-at-home mom with three kids, involved in a lot of nonprofit and community-based volunteer work. I bought my first road bike a year ago, and for the past year have been leading a weekly road ride (25-30 miles) among my gal pals on Thursday mornings at 9am. I am looking for more women riders to connect with to go on more weekday rides, and longer weekend rides. Sadly, Sunday morning rides don’t work so well for my schedule, even though the routes look really fun and varied.
Michelle DeWard: I’m 47, married with three children. I’m a nurse but not working right now. I’m new to Colorado. I’ve been cycling since 2012 on a hybrid but upgraded to a road bike and clip pedals this year!! I would consider myself a novice cyclist. I love to ride and soak up all the sunshine and whatever nature has to offer. I often cycle to hammock and I’ve been known to carry my bike up and down ravines or along a lakeshore to find the perfect hammock-tree-resting spot. I’m not competitive by nature, but I love cycling and I want to get better at it!!!
Janna Dickerson: I grew up in Fort Collins, and after going to college in Pennsylvania, I couldn’t stay away. I love being outside, taking photographs and making art, teaching tennis, riding my bike and working to make Fort Collins an even better place to ride a bike! I have been surrounded by bikes my whole life but have really been enjoying cycling recently. I spend most of my time on my road bike, but am also partial to my gravel bike and the adventures off pavement!
Ana Daniella Espinoza: My name is Ana. I am from Venezuela but I have been in Colorado for 22 years. I am a single mother and for all this years I have been working hard to raise my kids and to get them out to college. Now that they are out of the house and living on their own, I think is time for me to enjoy the things that I like and one of them is riding my bike, exercise and meet new friends. I started to ride my road bike in March 2018. I always liked to ride my bike for recreational rides but now that I have more time, I have been riding with the FCCC since March 2018. I would like to continue riding and a women group sound fantastic to me. I would like to become a better rider, improve my overall strength and endurance a be a blessing to participate in rides and cycling events. I don’t think that I feel comfortable with racing but I never know. I am very determine when I want to accomplish something.
Maria Esswein: Hi, I’m Maria and I moved to Fort Collins in mid-September from St. Louis, MO, where I pretty much grew up and lived for the 5-6 years prior to moving for grad school and work. I always loved riding my bike as a kid-I would ride to swim practice and to friend’s houses. I started riding bikes again the summer before my sophomore year when I bought my first road bike in July 2009 and then switched from the swim team to the mountain biking team that fall (my sophomore year) at Union College (one of the best decisions of my life). I’ve been riding bikes and racing ever since then. I mainly race MTB (endurance) and it’s my first love but I also enjoy racing crits (for fun/training) and CX. I’m sad to have left my St. Louis cycling community but I’m looking forward to getting to know more of the Fort Collins cycling community.
Samantha Evans: Hi, my name is Sam Evans and I have been riding bikes forever. I grew up in Davis, California which means I was riding my bike to school as early as kindergarten. Although I am not a competitive rider, I love everything bikes. I worked for Backroads, a bicycle touring company, for 3 years as a tour guide, which really got me into longer rides and bike packing.
I moved to Fort Collins a year and a half ago, and love all of the biking things this town offers. I am usually riding around with my boyfriend, and although I love him to pieces, I need some gal time behind handle bars. I would like to find a group of women who I can ride with and explore new possibilities. Everyone has told me mountain biking is awesome and that I would like it, so it would be great to meet some ladies willing to show me what that is all about.
Sayra Giannetto: In May 2015, I lost my uncle in a cycling accident. He and I were very close, and up until his death, I had only ridden my bike as a form of commuting. Following his accident, I decided to do a half-Ironman (70.3 miles) in his honor. I trained for 6+ months until I lined up with hundreds of other athletes and dove into the water to start my first triathlon. I ended up placing first in my AG that race, and I had my uncle’s ashes with me the whole time. Since then, I have completed six 70.3 races, and one full Ironman. Crossing that finish line after 140.6 miles was the most incredible moment of my entire life.
After falling in love with cycling in triathlons, I decided to give cyclocross a shot. Within 4 minutes of my first race, I stepped down and snapped off my derailleur and that was the end of that race. In the summer of 2018, I decided I wanted to learn how to mountain bike, so I signed myself up for a cross-country mountain bike race series. It was a steep learning curve for sure, but I quickly fell in love. To my surprise, I ended up winning the series (mostly because of participation points, but that’s ok). I was hooked! For my last hoorah with my team before I moved, I decided to give cross another go, and again, to my surprise, ended up placing third!! While I may not be the fastest or most skilled, I’m determined, competitive and I like to have fun! 🙂 During this next year, I’m hoping to continue building my confidence and skills when it comes to dirt + bikes, and make a lot of awesome friends while doing it! Super excited to see what 2019 brings.
Dani Gigliotti: I first fell in love with riding bikes when I made the move to Fort Collins in 2015. Working as a mail carrier on the rural side of the Postal Service, I’ve discovered some wild and wonderful dirt and gravel roads to ride. This year I want to backpack the Colorado trail, race my first Xterra, PR a half marathon and compete in open water swimming ! As part of the Follies, I’d love to step up and lead some group rides. My training mantra is to always have fun!
Kirsten Gofenna: I can’t remember a time when I didn’t own a bike! I’ve always ridden for fun and enjoyment, taking part in longer (century) rides in my 20’s and pulling my kids in a Burley in my 30’s. Fast forward to 2012 and my first Triathlon (at the tender age of 48) and biking catapulted back into my life. I lost confidence in 2013 after getting hit by a car but am back in the saddle after some stellar coaching and am excited to meet like-minded women and have a group to ride with. My big goal this year is Maine 70.3.
Patricia Grajeda-Babb: My name is Patricia but I go by Tricia. Born and raised in Mexico, and moved to the Texas to pursue my College degree. My interest for cycling started six years ago, when I signed up for my first triathlon and OH BOY I was hooked, immediately fell in love and I haven’t stopped since!!! I love being outside, so CO is the perfect place to live. Looking forward to another great year with this amazing group.
Maya Heath: Hello! My name is Maya Heath and I am currently in the process of receiving a Master’s of Science in Biomedical Sciences at CSU. I discovered my love for cycling while studying for my my undergrad classes at a local bike café in Boulder. Soon after being exposed to the craziness that cycling has to offer, my parents gifted me a road bike for graduation. The obsession with gears hasn’t stopped since. I look forward to meeting some amazing people, and strengthening myself both mentally and physically!
Katherina Hell: I grew up in the Italian Alps, in a small town smacked right in the middle of the Dolomites. There, I started biking at a young age (2 or 3 maybe, you’d have to ask my parents), my parents would take me on rides around the lake but my family was mainly into rock climbing and backcountry skiing. In college, I was looking for something I could do in between classes, and, living in Innsbruck, Austria, mountain biking was a no brainer (given I already climbed and skied). When I moved to Bozeman, MT for a PhD working in Antarctica, I got a sweet Santa Cruz Nickel and since then I can’t imagine a life without a mountain bikes (and skis). What makes me unique? I am not sure…I’d say…who’s really unique? But I like microbes, alpine lakes and glaciers, mountains, bikes and skis.
Gail Hogeland: I started riding as a commuter 6 years ago to be more active. In the last 6 years I’ve become a more active cyclist and found that I still love to race and be competitive. This year for me will be about not giving up. Setting goals to ride more than I ever have before.
Heather Hughes: My cycling career started in my home state of Ohio. I began cycling in 2009 while in college. By 2012, I was part of an amateur racing team called the Summit Freewheelers in northeast Ohio. It was during that time that I learned how to train hard and how to suffer. In 2013, I successfully finished my first half Ironman event in Mont-Tremblant, Québec. Also in 2013, I moved to northern New Mexico and started tackling mountain rides, such as Pikes Peak, Santa Fe Ski Basin, Triple Bypass, Iron Horse, Copper Triangle, and Tour of the Moon. Now that I live in Colorado, I train the foothills of Fort Collins and look forward to the next big event!
Renee Hutchens: When I was younger, I remember wanting to do everything my older brother was doing. He was riding a bike, and so I was motivated to learn how to ride a bike, too. After skipping the training wheels stage completely, I soon found myself alongside my brother building ramps with scraps of wood and cinder blocks, catching air, and popping wheelies out of huge potholes on our long dirt driveway. My first experience racing bikes was racing my brother down our country dirt road on my huffy bike to see who could reach this particular bridge first. I can’t say I ever won, but I loved the challenge and the feel of skidding across that dirt bridge, giving each other high fives, and laughing together. While biking has always been a part of my life, it wasn’t until recently that I tapped back into mountain biking after a decade long break. The past few years have been some of the toughest years of my life, experiencing some of life’s deepest hardships. I needed my life back and to find myself again. My “rebirth” into the mountain biking world came full circle back to my roots, occurring in a special place near and dear to my heart, Moab, Utah. I grew up nearby amongst the sandstone canyons of northern Arizona on the Navajo reservation, and out in the countryside of Oklahoma on a farm. So when my friends invited me to bike Moab with them in the spring of 2017, I was all in, except one minor issue, I did not have a mountain bike. So a week before the trip I added a full suspension mountain bike to my growing collection of bikes comprising of a road, TT, cyclocross, and commuter bike. Several bruises later and all smiles, my passion for mountain biking was re-ignited and here to stay!
Amie James: My name is Amelia but I go by Amie. I started cycling about 2008 when I lived in Tucson, AZ. Rides where just for fun or commuting to school. Tucson is where I got my first and only (as of now) rode bike, an old 90’s something Univega from a bike co-op in town. It took me awhile to get used to a road bike but now it is my favorite and I find it hard to ride anything else! I got into doing more mileage when I moved to Fort Collins and joined up with the Women’s Wrenching Group in 2015. There I met gals that love to ride (even long distance) no matter what type of bike they have! I rode my bike a lot last spring and summer. My goal was to get better at getting up the hills! I still need to work on that and getting more miles. Since buying a place off HWY 287 I haven’t ridden much if at all. I am hoping that joining the Fort Follies will help me stay motivated to keep riding and achieving my biking goals. As for something unique about myself…hmmm sometime instead of signing along to a song I like to bust out my mouth trumpet skills.
Marketa Jancar: Hi! My name is Marketa! I joined the Fort Follies and started cycling in 2018. After a few group rides I found out I really liked riding my bike. I also enjoy Fort Collins’ beer and long walks with my boyfriend Brandon and our dog, Tucker.
Laura Jolly: I’ve been passionate about cycling as a form of sustainable and empowering transportation for a long time. I have learned to do almost all my own maintenance, taken apart and rebuilt bikes, and I teach bike maintenance and repair skills to the female and LGBTQ patrons of the Fort Collins Bike Co-op. Recently I’ve begun exploring cycling as a sport more. Now I have a trail bike and a proper road bike, and I’m looking to improve my riding and find some companionship along the way!
Jenny Jones: My love of bikes has been life-long, starting with the two wheeler that I got from my dad for Christmas the year I turned three. This also happened to be the same bike that stopped my belief in Santa Claus. Since then, I’ve been a big road bike lover and have gotten a few century rides under my belt, survived a pretty nasty bike/car collision, and learned to procrastinate all sorts of work and chores by telling myself “it’s okay…another mile or two can’t hurt.”
Kylie Jones: I started mountain biking about five years ago and really got into the sport because of my husband and the Laramie Mountain Bike Series races. Within the last year, I’ve had a baby and this forever changed cycling for me. Now, I want my cycling to be an example for my daughter of what women are capable of when you have a passion and determination, as well as an example of loving our natural world. With my husband being an avid cyclist too, I hope that it will turn into a family pastime as my little girl grows up. For this upcoming season, I hope to regain my fitness, improve my technical skills, continue racing, and just have fun on the bike, as well as support the Fort Collins bike community.
Tanae Jones: This will be my third year Mountain Biking and my second year as a Follie. My husband is an avid mountain biker and has shared his love with me and our two kids that are 3 and 5. We are a biking family and are so fortunate to live in a community where great trails, fun races, good beer and happy people are abundant. Destination biking has become a big part of our lives, we have loved traveling and trying out new trails. My hopes are that our biking lifestyle will instill a sense of wonder in our children while also giving them the opportunity to discover what they love about the outdoors and themselves. This year I hope to push myself to do longer rides and to find joy within the suffering!
Abby Kacena: I bought my first bike 5.5 years ago to attend a week of RAGBRAI back in Iowa and it opened my eyes to the world of cycling! Since then I have enjoyed so many fun times on and off the bike with cycling friends. My favorite passion is exploring new places by bike, not to mention enjoying a local beer afterward. Racing on the road and cyclocross racing have become addictions and I love the adventure of mountain biking. The Fort Follies are an amazing group of women!
Becca Kalet: I got into cycling by way of triathlon. I’ve been a swimmer since I was a kid and swam competitively through junior high school, and picked up running as a way to keep me and my border collie both in shape, so those were no problems. But cycling was brand new. It has been a challenge and I haven’t loved every moment, but I have turned my weakness into a strength and can now say with pride that I am a cyclist. I’ve even ridden a century now.
Maria Kelley: Started cycling in Iowa, moved to Colorado to enjoy the mountains. Fell in love with cycling specifically road but am working on my mountain bike skills as well. Enjoy triathlons, group rides – social and competitive. Looking forward to the focused road rides toward racing.
Michelle Klamm: I have a tendency to throw myself into something, and paddle like hell! Up until a couple of years ago, I commuted on my bike maaaaybe 2 miles a day. It’s really only recently that I fell in love with bike riding with the purchase of my Specialized gravel bike. Literally the day after I purchased it, I went and biked 20 miles in the Tetons, in clip ins ( I’d never used these before, so plenty of laughs had at my inability to clip out before falling over), with a 20 mile an hour head wind. haha It was tough, but I was hooked! Found myself a few months later bike packing 200 miles in the Pisgah National Park with Ramble Ride (minimal training going into this). I was last everyday, but only needed a lift in one time (as did 15 other riders). I’m a pastry Chef by profession, avid outdoor adventurist, and have one heck of a quick whit! I’m inspired by strong, passionate and patient women who focus on building each other up and think this group of bad ass babes would gel perfectly. Looking forward to riding with ya’ll (yes, I say that. It’s genius!)
Ayla Kuchta: I have been a cyclist my entire adult life 30+ years. I spend most of my time road biking but am working on my MTB abilities and do Triathlons too. In the winter I focus more on skiing. My husband and I do most of our riding together, either one on one or with friends, family or organized group rides.I am married with two kids who are out of college and out of the house. My career has been in engineering in the semiconductor industry.
Amy LaTendresse Glasser: Amy was introduced to the sports of cycling and triathlon in 2010, and has been active in the Fort Collins cycling community since then. She joined the Fort Follies in 2013 and enjoys meeting and riding with other ladies interested in growing the sport of ladies cycling. She has participated in numerous triathlons, Xterras, half ironman races, and finished her first full ironman race in Cozumel in 2013. Amy is a physical therapist at Colorado in Motion and is trained and certified in performing cycling analyses, bicycle fits, and cycling biomechanics. She completed her NAIOMT (North American Institute of Manual Therapy) Fellowship and achieved her specialty in orthopedic manual therapy. When she has free time (ha ha), her interests include learning more about fly fishing, rock climbing, kayaking, snowboarding, and hanging out with her brewmaster husband, Adam, and their dog, Griffin.
Emma Malin: I love to ride! I mostly commute but wanna get more on the road and the trails!
Christina McClard: I started road riding ten years ago in order to do triathlons and soon got into mountain biking as well. Took a few years off but now enjoy it from more of a social perspective.
Rachel McCrary: While I’ve technically owned a mountain bike since 2010, I didn’t ride more than a handful of times before Spring 2014. My boyfriend had been competing in local endurance races and his dedication inspired me to challenge myself to train for and race in the Laramie Enduro (a 68 mile endurance race just outside Laramie,WY). That summer I rode my bike almost exclusively with my boyfriend and by myself, but I finished the race (12th from last, in about 10 hours) with a huge smile on my face! After the Enduro I discovered the Fort Follies and I started riding and racing with local girls. Now, many years later, I can’t imagine my life without mountain biking and the community of people I have met in Fort Collins.
Karen McCullah: I completed my first tri in 2011 and started road biking with groups on the weekends. Last year I started riding more consistently with an Endurance House Group ride in Georgia, then I joined TNT for the AMBBR ride in Lake Tahoe last June. I definitely need to improve my riding. Although I rode consistently last year to prep for Tahoe, I never got any faster! I am shy so I have had a hard time making new friends and I’m hoping this will be a great combination of riding, fun and friends!
Nancy McElwain: Got started with MS 150 ride in 1991. Raced bikes in the 90s. Then did triathalons – Kona 2005. Started racing bikes again last year when I moved here. I love riding here!
Tirrel Miller: When I first moved to Fort Collins and didn’t have a car, the bike was my best adventuring access and loyal transport. I love the feeling of fresh air and the nimbleness and elegance of biking. I have a competitive streak that comes out once and awhile, but I am mostly a casual rider. I enjoy diverse hobbies but I always come back to riding!
Jan Moenck: I started cycling when I was in high school and biked down the coast of California with a group of friends. I’ve cycled on and off since then, depending on how busy I was, where I lived, and whether or not I had a decent bike. I trained and went on a bike trip in Spain about 5 years ago, and biked faithfully after that for a couple years, but have got out of the habit the last couple of years due to my work schedule and traveling for work. I recently moved to Fort Collins and would like to get back into cycling on a regular basis. I prefer riding on the trail system rather than strictly street riding, but will do both. I’m excited to join Fort Follies and look forward to getting back into cycling, meeting fellow cycling enthusiasts, and building new skills.
Lauren Nagle: I have tried many forms of cycling over the years, and I have discovered where I feel most at home: on dirt doing the most difficult things possible. I particularly love to bikepack and to ride gravel. Give me a chunky steep forest road or some single track, and I will be right a home. Yes, yes, I can be serious and I race also. You can see me doing all sorts of grassroots races, from CX to time trials. I also love endurance gravel racing on my sweet fat bike, Karen, because it is stupid hard to even get 100 miles in on her, never mind more than that. When I am not owning type 2 fun, you can find me playing bike polo or wrenching on bikes and doing all sorts of things in the cycling community.
Kelsey Navarre: I got into riding when I decided to give triathlon a shot. Let’s be honest, bike is the best event! I used to ride road regularly, but several summers working as a wildlife biologist in remote field camps put a damper on that. In 2017, I moved to Fort Collins to pursue a Master’s degree in Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology. I won’t be doing field work this summer, so it seems like the perfect time to get back out on the bike, especially my new mountain bike!
Elizabeth O’Brien Smith: I’m transitioning to biking slowly…. kind of like everything I do athletically. I’m a long distance runner who married a cyclist and so the story goes…Our favorite dates are night time mountain bike rides, usually Lory or Pinewood Res., you’ll find me tooling around town with my husband.( Usually ending up at a local brewery!). I’m going to road ride more this year and take on some cyclocross races. Hope to meet the Follies out more and get used to riding in groups (preparing for Ragbrai in Iowa this year!) Looking forward to making friends & riding buddies! See you all soon.
Emily Osberg: I am a hobby cyclist who enjoys trying to push myself. I’m not highly competitive but enjoy seeing how I can improve. I find road cycling is good for shutting my brain off and cruising. I find mountain biking a challenge and enjoy being in nature. I need to escape from being a mom to 3 kids under age 8. I love being social on rides and getting to know people!
Kat Peters-Midland: I am an avid swimmer and cyclist. I love the feeling of “flying” on my bike and the wind in my face. One of my favorite activities to do is bike to my pool work out and back home or for a chai at a coffee shop. I enjoy the camaraderie of riding with fellow women cyclists. It is such fun!
Courtney Peterson: I learned to ride single track in the Eastern forests and love Northern Colorado’s wide open views! Nothing better than riding fast, or slow, in the big sky country. Just upgraded to a Santa Cruz 5010 and she’s a beauty! Would love to connect with other women looking to improve technical skills and just have fun.
Stephane Ralls: My name is Stephanie Ralls – I have been riding mountain bikes for the last 5 or so years and racing for the last 2. I’m a recent transplant from Missoula, MT to Fort Collins and am greatly looking forward to more sunny days = more riding. This season, my goal is to get stronger on uphills and more comfortable/faster on the downs. I’d love to try out cyclocross and possibly some road riding! Stoked for some new terrain and new friends. What is unique about me = I’m a firm believer in someone has to be in last place, and have taken the honor many times (ha ha). Looking to lose my throne a couple of times this year.
MJ Redman: I started cycling in Seattle in the 90’s so that I could do triathlons and commute to work. I joined a women’s cycling team because the bike was my weakest link and fell in the love with the sport and the community. I raced road and cross mainly with a little mountain for fun. Also raced cross in Maryland, then got addicted to ultra running in Texas. When my knees reached their expiration date, I returned to the bike again and now that my sense of reason is fully distorted, I want to see how far I can go!
Gretchen Reuning: I started mountain biking in college and fell in love with the sport. I took some time off riding bikes but started up again in force a couple of years ago in Fort Collins. I’m obsessed with biking and can’t wait to improve my climbing endurance and wheelies this year
Mindy Rice: I started “cycling” back when I lived in Lubbock, TX in 2003 and was so bored that I decided to start doing sprint triathlons which were popular there at the time. I first rode my 10 year old dirt bike for these races until I got my first real road bike in 2006. I really didn’t get into more longer distances and Olympic triathlons until I moved back to Colorado in 2008. I would like to start riding longer distances and would like to train for another Olympic triathlon of which I had taken a break from. But my main goal is to find people to ride with and to get out of my comfort zone of 20-30 mile rides. I’m less focused on racing and more focused on endurance overall. What makes me unique is that I’m a wildlife biologist who loves black rhinos and travels the world to find all 5 species! And some people might say my laugh is loud and pretty recognizable as well.
Tori Royle: I have been mountain biking for about 6 years. Raced some cross country, not quite my thing. Took a clinic and found I like more of the downhill and enduro aspect. I got my coaching certification through PMBIA last year and have been doing some coaching since then.
Catherine Salisbury: Hi Follies! I have been mountain biking and enjoying other outdoor sports for a long time, but biking became my go to sport when my son was born 4 years ago. I always enjoy riding with and being inspired by other strong, adventurous women. I am hoping to participate in more enduro races this year as well as become a strong and better technical climber. Thanks for having me as part of the team!
Natalie Santelli: Natalie was introduced to the sports of cycling and triathlon in 2011, and the wheels haven’t stopped spinning since. She became a Follies Team member in 2013 and enjoys mentoring new riders and growing the sport of women’s cycling. Her two biggest personal cycling accomplishments are finishing Ironman Cozumel in 2013 and completing the West Elk Bicycle Classic 134 mile endurance ride in Crested Butte. When Natalie isn’t cycling, she can be found at the Eye Center of Northern Colorado, working as an Optometrist, or playing with her Weimaraner, Mia.
Jen Schiller: I began riding in a more engaged way about 2 summers ago. I bought a little hybrid and really dug cruising around town. My house was/is quite small, and I didn’t think I had space for 2 bikes…but I didn’t want to get rid of my old one (a 1980s Gary Fisher mountain bike). That ol’ thing took me up and down Cirque Meadows Road at Pingree Park many times (Which is where I taught myself a thing or two about loosening up my arms and forcing my gaze away from big rocks). It’s also where I learned about how good it feels to keep going – even when it feels so hard. So I kept that bike and began riding it more on little bits of mountain trails around town. I had so much fun and quickly understood that I had some skills to build…and that those u-brakes weren’t going to cut it for very long. This past summer I bought a used mountain bike was super-excited. And…well…the very next day I delivered quite a little (non bike-related) injury to my knee. Since then, I have been building back my strength (amazing PT, Amy, thank you!), using my hybrid as a road bike, and discovering how much I truly, truly love riding. I have also learned a lot about bike maintenance, which I also really love (thanks Bike Co-op!). I recently started some endurance classes at Source, and am hooked! I am feeling strong, and am excited and eager to get stronger. I have signed up for 2 Xterra sprint triathlons this summer. At this point, I do not consider myself a racer. I think of myself as a participator who is building strength and speed and confidence, and diggin’ the rides!! Oh! I am also a Montessori teacher of 6-9 year-old children (who are now learning a lot about bikes!).
Jennifer Schneider: I’ve been a casual road biking on and off for ten years in order to do triathlons, but consider myself still learning. I’m hoping to master some hills, continue to learn how to ride with a group, and primarily find some fun people to ride with! I bike to work everyday, even in the rain and snow, so my one year old rides travels via bike way more than car! Also, my favorite holiday is Bike to Work Day!
Pam Schrock: I purchased a bike prior to moving from Atlanta to Fort Collins three years ago and did some minimal riding. I started riding last March with the Follies and have enjoyed it more than I ever thought possible. I’m looking forward to a great season and looking forward to participating in my first cycling race.
Kate Schulte: Learned to bike as a kid, of course, but got interested in multisport in my twenties and have ridden since. Love riding for the exercise and challenge but also because you get to see so much gorgeous scenery.
Diane Schultz: I’m a late bloomer when it comes to cycling. Started road riding about 7 years ago to train for sprint triathlons. As I met more similar minded people, I also started mountain bike riding and have done the Lory Xterra the last two years. I’m not a serious competitor, I enter races now and then, but mostly enjoy group rides with fun people.
Kelly Sharp: I ride mostly road or gravel and will very, very occasionally ride the mountain bike. The thing I enjoy most about cycling is the level of attention or focus required when you are working hard. I love not thinking about anything other than watching the road in front of me or the next line I’m going to take. This upcoming year I hope to bike more miles then this past year, do some bikepacking/touring, maybe try cross, maybe do some local races, and ride bikes more with the kids I work with. When I’m not on a bike I really like to read. Or paddle board to secret beaches at Horsetooth to read there. Sometimes I like making bread. Sometimes I like to fly fish.
Kaycee Simon: I started cycling after a knee injury. That was about 8 years ago. I am looking forward to improving my skill road/mountain bike, in addition to trying the city crits or other races this year.
Lisa Sinclair: My big brothers taught me how to ride a bike when I was a kid but most of my life I have just been a commuter cyclist. About 10 years ago I finally bought a road bike as a way to cross train and give my body a break from running. Last year I entered my first organized ride, the Copper Triangle, and loved it! So, I would like to spend more time on my bike, meet new people, and ride in a few non-competitive events.
Suzy Spezzano: I didn’t start riding bikes till I was 35.I had stopped smoking and was looking for something to do to keep myself busy, so I went out and bought a Schwinn cruiser. I’ve been bike crazy ever since. I look forward to riding more this year. I would love to try and do some grass-roots races and try an enduro race this year.
Tera Smith: While I lived on a bike as a kid, cycling wasn’t a thing for me until I completed my first triathlon 3 years ago. I love the challenge of taking on 3 disciplines, and the variety it provides. My confidence lies with swimming and running, and I am ready to add cycling to that list. I’m not one for blending in, and I live by the thought that “normal” is boring. Every mile, no matter how you get there, changes you…so, bring it on!
Susan Strong: I started cycling six years ago when I bought my first road bike and trained for a couple of sprint triathlons. I quickly discovered that I wasn’t too bad on the bike and I really loved cycling! I love endurance rides and want to get faster overall, especially climbing. My bucket list is full of bike tours, but meanwhile, I’m hoping to ride as often as I can with great people!
Amy Swan: Soon after moving to Fort Collins many moons ago, I started riding to work and around town and became a dedicated bike commuter. One summer after a few particularly unpleasant runs (on my feet), I decided I needed a new fitness outlet. A bunch of lady friends rode road bikes and had fun group rides, so I decided to get in on that action. A few years later my friend Kate fixed up my mountain bike and insisted I get on some dirt. Turns out mountain biking is my jam! I completed my first endurance mtb race last summer and am planning to do a couple more races this summer. I spend a lot of time dreaming about places and trails I have yet to ride. I feel fortunate to have found such a fun, supportive group of women with which to share the bike love!
Kelly Elise Ulmer: I was first introduced to road cycling by my older brother during my freshman year of college. My bike quickly became a primary mode of transportation and a way to explore my hometown. After graduating and starting my career as an eating disorder therapist, I discovered a deeper passion for being on my bike as a form of self-care and time for reflection and adventure. After completing my first century in 2017, I caught the bug for ultra-distance cycling. My longest ride to date was 250 miles, but I have hopes of completing a full super randonneur series in 2019. Since moving to Fort Collins last summer, I’ve branched out into mountain and gravel as well, although I still feel most at home on the road.
Anna Towne: I am a Physical Therapist at Rebound Sports and PT and I LOVE my job of working with athletes and getting them back to the activities they love! I personally love tris, mostly the biking and running! I try to do as many tris and road race with Athletes in Tandem as possible, pulling/pushing an adult with disabilities with me on the road is such a challenge but it is very rewarding! I love any and every outdoor sport- especially snow and water sports! I love exploring CO with my husband because I am originally from Iowa and I have only been out here for 3 years so I just can’t get enough of the mountains!
Tiffani Walker: I started road cycling in 2014 and have been part of the Fort Follies since 2016. I recently got into duathlons and I think I have found my happy place in the racing world. Running is my first love, but mixing in the cycling has been a great addition, not only for how fun it is, but for the cross training too. This year I’m hoping to get more comfortable with going downhill and to keep my motivation to keep kicking ass high so I don’t feel tempted to quit training after my first race. I am looking forward to getting in many more miles this year with the Follies and to meet more folks to train with and have a beer with. I also enjoy horseback riding and hiking in case anyone wants some company on the trails sometime.
Jamie Wheeler: I am truly wanting to race this year. I am managing my nagging neck pain and am making my cycling goals a bit of a priority, as much as I can. I hope to actually join more rides this year but am also joining the Rio Team. I am hoping to actually connect with some of you all this year! My life is just busy!
Melody White: I didn’t start cycling as an “adult” until about two years ago at the age of 40 – I am one of those crazy runner types (1 mile to 50k). I got into cycling because I promised my baby brother I would do a triathlon with him – apparently there was a 56 mile bike ride in the middle of this sport – and my gold 1997 trek 7000 wasn’t going to work. I am currently on the Runners Roost Race team and the Pearl Izumi women’s triathlon team.
Jacqueline Vance: I started cycling about 2 years ago with my dad. I’ve come to enjoy cycling, but have never done it super consistently. I prefer to ride with people, so I’m excited to have people to ride with!
Michelle Verant: Biking is freedom for me. When I am cycling, my mind is free to be creative and contemplative. When I am mountain biking, my mind is focused and nothing else matters. When I am biking around the city, my mind is curious and observing all the little things that pass by (like a Richard Scarry book!). All the while, my body is energized with fresh air and the feeling of power as my muscles work. The peace and contentment of pure exhaustion at the end of a hard ride and a cold beer with friends is pretty awesome too. That’s why I like biking. I look forward sharing these experiences with other awesome women and being inspired and challenged to be a better biker and better person.
Jill Zarestky: I started cycling in 2003 to train for triathlons but it quickly became a hobby of its own. In addition to Olympic and Half-Iron tri’s, I’ve done a number of RAGBRAI and MS 150 events. After moving to Colorado in 2016, I’ve been spending a lot of time on work and not gotten to ride much. I’m looking forward to getting back out on the road and meeting other women cyclists.
Katherine Zaunbrecher: I bought a road bike in 2011 and never looked back…I am now very comfortable on my road bike, am slowly building confidence on my mountain bike, and look forward to trying out gravel and bikepacking this coming year! I am looking forward to the challenges that I will face in the coming year, both self-inflicted and otherwise. The community and opportunities that the Follies provides is amazing.