Brooklin’s Emily Batty gave it her all at the Rio Olympics and fell just short of a podium finish when she was edged out by her teammate Catharine Pendrel who won bronze in Rio. The mountain biker placed fourth and was emotional after the win, but it was a much better finish that 4 years prior in London. Batty finished in 24th place in the 2010 Olympics in London after breaking her collarbone in training a few days before the event. We caught up with the Olympian when she was in Durham before heading out to the CI MTB World Cup in Vallnord, Andorra.
Emily, if anyone were to drive around Brooklin during the Olympics they would have been greeted by signs that said ‘Go Emily!’ or somebody stopping you to say they somehow were related to you or knew you. What has the support of your community in Durham Region meant to you:
When I see photos on twitter, and when I get emails and Facebook posts of encouragement, it’s one of the best parts of being part of the Olympics. To see a small community in Durham Region be as excited to see an athlete go represent our small area is so honouring. One of my missions besides getting medals is to use those experiences and bring them to our families and friends and our communities and expose our sport. Cycling is an ageless sport and I want to take that opportunity and get more families involved, more kids involved and so when I see those signs it shows that people care and that makes my job so much more fun and enjoyable.
You gave an emotional interview after placing 4th in the Olympics, 4th is still an amazing accomplishment! Are you able to take any satisfaction from your accomplishment?
When you get that close to a medal, and my heart was set on a medal it’s such a bittersweet experience and I was definitely emotional and honestly I am still emotional! In hindsight my preparation was spot on and my coach and I are a team. My coach is my husband so it’s like a 24/7 goal that we work towards. It makes me more motivated for the next Olympics which is only 4 years away. It will come quick as the Rio Games did from the London Games. I am really looking forward to it though, I know if I just do what I know to do then hopefully it will go well in Tokyo.
Will you have anytime to celebrate here in Durham Region before you get back to training and your next event?
I actually left a lot of my family in Rio! They are still there doing some sightseeing and enjoying the beautiful city. It was so wonderful to have them there in Rio with me to go on this journey. I am going to be home for just a few days and then on then I take off back to Europe for our final cup in Andorra.
Then after Andorra is there a break or does the preparation for 2020 start?
After Andorra, my husband and I will definitely take a bit of a break. We will play around with other sports, play with our dirt bikes get back to reality for a few weeks before we start focusing on next year.