Fluker fired up for Europe


Queenstown mountain biking ace Kate Fluker is about to start her northern hemisphere campaign in a bid to win Olympic selection.

The 27-year-old, who defended her national women’s cross country title in February, contests the first round of the 2015 World Cup in the Czech Republic this weekend, then the second round in Germany the following

She’s competing in six races over seven weeks including the third World Cup round in Switzerland in early July.

Fluker then returns for the final rounds in North America in August before competing in the world champs in Andorra in September.

This is her third but most extensive northern hemisphere campaign due to her successful fundraising efforts early this year including an auction that raised $15,000.

“I was training for the possibility of maybe not even being able to afford to go, but after the auction I’ve just been able to train so well.

“The motivation that I’ve got, I’ve never had before because I just don’t have the worry and stress.”

Fluker says in local races like the Motatapu and Tour de Wakatipu she made big improvements on last year.

“Even training-wise, I can see I’m getting places faster.”

She’s hoping to achieve top-20 places in her World Cup races.

“A lot of the riders aim just for world champs, but I need to get a good overall result from the whole series.”

Fluker, who competed in the Commonwealth Games in Scotland last year, says she needs good results this year to win selection for the Olympics in Brazil next year.

She adds she’s very grateful for the support she’s had from the Queenstown community and singles out her manager Steve Norton - “he’s been unreal”.