Tina Pic Background
Tina Pic is a pro-cyclist and director for the Colavita Cycling team, the longest-standing professional women's cycling team. She is also a head cycling coach for The Savannah College of Art and Design. Through this, she is able to find great cyclists and people at the race who are looking for an art education.
How did you get into cycling and become a part of Colavita?
Tina Pic first got into cycling while in college. She was a tri-athlete and had previously been interested in cycling. When she called the college’s cycling team coordinator they said the team wasn’t currently training. Serendipitously, Tina was out running one day a little while later and saw a group of women on bikes. She asked if they knew anything about the college team and it just so happened those women were on the team and the rest is history.
“I thought cycling might just be temporary, but I made it my career”
After racing in college she got picked up by professional teams. She thought this would be a temporary passion and that she would return to school to become a surgeon, which was her life plan and what her parents expected. However, she made the bold and difficult choice of doing something she loved. Instead of going back to school, she made a career out of cycling through sponsorships and coaching.
What has cycling meant to you over the years?
In life, you are always trying to balance a thousand different things. Cycling has become a way for Tina to let that all go and enjoy life. As a cycling coach at a college, she gets to connect with students who are newly discovering their passion for the sport which keeps her energy alive.
Cycling is also a means to education for Tina. She sees many men and women get cycling scholarships who wouldn’t be able to afford school otherwise. When Tina went to school, there were very limited scholarship opportunities. She would’ve loved to have the opportunity she is able to give students today. The Savannah School of Art and Design even offers scholarships for grad students, which is a great way for students to marry their passion for cycling with getting an education for their future.
“I would’ve given my left arm to get a scholarship like the ones we are able to give out today.”
What is your advice to someone who wants to get into cycling, but is hesitant?
Her advice to a novice cyclist is you just gotta do it. You have to show up, every time you want to cycle you have to go for it. Even when you get scrapes, fall down, or crash you have to get back up and keep going with determination and grit. You will have failures and fall down, but as long as you keep getting back up you will get better.
“You just gotta do it”
What are your favorite parts of event day?
Her favorite parts of race day come after the race has already started. Usually, these races are a little later in the day and she will have nerves until the race starts. Once it actually starts, that all goes away and she goes into her athlete headspace. She is focused on herself, her team, and the course they are riding on that day. Her team has a radio to communicate but they usually will just yell to one another when biking near each other with short concise directives. This is to let one another know if someone is coming up behind them, whether they need to move in the lineup or something about how the whole team is doing.
“It doesn’t always work that way when you’re in the race.”
It’s really about strategy for Tina, everyone on the team has a job, and those jobs may change depending on how the race is going to get more points or to change their position. They talk about where everyone on the team will be a few hours before when they survey the course, but that can all change in a matter of seconds when something happens during the race. All team members need to be ready to adapt at a moment's notice.
Find you passion and find a way to make is your life.
Come see Colavita race on August 27 and 28th in Indianapolis.