Isabella Brookshire cycles for two hours on her short training days. Her favorite route to ride is from Town Mountain in Asheville to the Blue Ridge Parkway where she heads towards Mount Mitchell.
Brookshire is on the junior team of Twenty20 Professional Cycling. Last year, she took silver and bronze place finishes at the USA Cycling Amateur Road Nationals in Louisville, Kentucky before flying to Europe for a summer of training.
Now she has earned a spot on the USA Cycling Junior National Team. Brookshire has been selected from riders across the country to represent the United States in three international races in March and April 2017.
"It is all super exciting--I've been racing for years, waiting to be the age when I could make this team," Brookshire said.
She will race in Italy's Trofeo Binda on March 19, Belgium's Gent-Wevelgem on March 26, and the Healthy Aging Tour in Holland from April 5 to 8.
Brookshire will stay in Europe for three weeks for the races and still plans on making her schoolwork a priority while she is there. "I'll be doing a lot of homework," she said. "Missing three weeks is a lot, and I am really thankful that the school is supporting me and working with me. I am so thankful that I have this chance."
Asheville School Athletic Director Carl Boland was pleased to hear Brookshire made the national team.
"We are very proud of Isabella for this outstanding accomplishment," Boland said. "She has worked very hard for this opportunity, and we wish her the best as she competes in Europe in the coming months."
For Brookshire, this tour will mark a whole new slate of racing experiences. "This is my first real race in Europe, where racing is at a whole other level," Brookshire said. "The opportunity to race for not just myself or my team, but to represent the nation, is really exciting."