How was your experience at your first Olympic Games in London?
You know, looking back London kind of seems like this big blur. I kind of feel like I was like a deer in the headlights when I got there. Nobody can prepare you for the Olympics; it’s something you just have to experience yourself. But I was 19-years old and I wasn’t prepared at all. I was seeing people, stars that I had seen on TV I was seeing them in the dining hall. It was normal, you know? I was a very, very amazing experience and it has prepared me a lot for Rio. I’m 23 now, I’m a lot more mature, and just having that experience under my belt and having experienced London going into Rio, I feel like it is going to help me tremendously just in the aspect that I deserve to be there alongside these other Olympians. I shouldn’t feel out of place being there.
You crashed in prelims, right?
Yeah, so, I crashed in the time trials, which was just a seeding run. I had a spill there… I barely missed my back tire on the landing and shot me over the bars. Thankfully, I was ok. I tore my quad muscle, got the wind knocked out of me a bit but looking back its kind of funny. You say you did BMX racing in the Olympics, and people were like, “Oh did you know that American girl that crashed?” And I’m like, “that was me.”
So you crashed but when did you start looking towards Rio?
I mean that next day I couldn’t wait for four years later to go to Rio, and do everything I could to get there… When I get into the gate, I need to lay it all out there because I’ve done everything that I possibly could. It hasn’t just been a month of training. It’s been four years to get to this point. I hope that I can bring home a medal.
What does that feel like to be able to represent the United States again and this time being so invested and ready to go?
It’s an honor; you know, it’s every kid’s dream, at least for me, to represent their country at their sport’s highest level. I’m honored to go and represent Team USA and do everything I can to bring home a medal.
So when you’re not racing in Rio are there any sports that you want to see?
Yes, I would love to see lots of sports, actually. I’m the biggest Steph Curry fan and I was almost in tears when I found out that he wasn’t going to Rio because I was so excited to maybe see him in the village and take a photo with him. But I would love to see basketball. I would love to see a track and field event. Maybe see gymnastics, I think they are incredible. If you’re at the Olympic Games, I would love to see any of those sports, honestly because we all have the same passion and are there for the same reason.
You said you were star struck in London was there anyone in particular?
The whole basketball team. They walked by us in the dining hall and they were eating McDonald’s. Like, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. I actually got up to try and get photo with LeBron. And me and Corbin did! And he looked at us and smiled and then started running because he didn’t want to take a picture with us.