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Olga Echenique, winner of the Titan Tropic: "I entered Cayo Jutias crying, I did not expect the victory"
Cuban Cyclist explains how she felt during her first Titan Tropic
We interviewed Cuban cyclist Olga Anabel Echenique who was proclaimed winner of the first edition of the Titan Tropic Cuba by GAES. This young athlete, crosscountry specialist, chose to go to the Titan mountain bike style and prepared with all her strength for it. He burst so strongly in the first long distance five stages competition that managed to cross the finish line in first position. Getting to your first Titan and win meant quite an achievement unfit to most.
The fact of winning at home made more special victory? Tell us how the arrival at Jutias was
When you're at home everyone expects the best of you, you gain a strong commitment by people who know you. It was special because I did not do marathon, only crosscountry. We did not have the mountain experience and my coach asked me to be among the top ten. After the first stage, it was horrible, I thought about quitting. Later I talked to my parents and encouraged me to continue and from there the second was better. The third was very favorable because it was to have much resistance. When I became leader thought I could not let go. I entered crying to Cayo Jutias, I did not expect it.
How do you think that affects the tropical climate to face a competition like this?
The climate is very humid and the feeling that you lack water, lack of hydration is not as clear for the participant. Having many rivers and high humidity could force the mistake of not properly hydrate yourself.
What aspect of the test did you enjoy the most?
The atmosphere of Titan Tropic Cuba by Gaes is the best of the race. No competitive environment but instead, the atmosphere is friendly, everyone wants to reach the final stage and overcome own limits. People seek to return and say I finished the Tropic. In the route the best part was where you saw mountains of great beauty in nature and then you see people cheering, supporting and giving encouragement for you to continue.
You have recently participated in the Gaes Titan Desert by Garmin, What did you experience the wilderness? What is harder?
I imagined something that would never end. I had seen many videos of the Titan Desert with burned people and falls apart from the beauty of the landscape. I prepared and I was eager to go to the podium. In the first stage I got lost and in the second I fell. I absorbed all these experiences and I learned from them so that in the next year, if I can go I’ll try to be among the first three.