In early February whilst on a training camp in Spain with my international Canyon/ SRAM racing trade team, I received the call from our Australian national selectors to be notified that I had been selected and nominated for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

A lot of the final selection was based on our performances throughout January whilst racing the Australian summer races.

It was a hectic schedule that I chose to do, to give myself the best possible opportunities for selection, and when I got the nomination call, it made it all the worthwhile in the end.

Ever since I received that call, I have been super excited to head to Queensland for the games; the Gold Coast has come really alive for these games and I couldn’t picture anywhere else I’d rather be, as I prepare to race on home soil in front of my family and friends.

Pleasingly, I’m feeling strong, and really positive, about the upcoming weeks.

I’ve been progressing well following a solid block of training and competition since the New Year, which is a massive confidence booster given 2017 wasn’t the best season for me.

I had a lot of inconsistencies with performances, I’d lost a bit of motivation and only managed a handful of decent results.

It has been nice to have put the past year behind me, reset and refocus as I move forward with my racing, starting 2018 with a clean slate.

My trade team teammates and staff have been brilliant support for me, really helping me regain motivation to get back to my best.

The atmosphere within the team this season so far has also given me so much more motivation for every race I go to with them, whether as a support rider or going for the result for the team.

As much as cycling is often viewed as individual focused to perhaps the outside world, it is in fact completely a team sport. The person standing on the podium isn’t there without a team of riders who position and help them towards success.

exclusive insight tiffany cromwell

It’s funny because for the past six months I have been competing against the other Australian riders who are with their respective trade teams on the Women’s World Tour, and so for the next couple of weeks we’ll have to put aside our competition differences and come together to perform well for Australia as an Australian team.

Anytime you get to represent your country is a massive thing for anyone, and it’s such on honour that you take on with great pride.

We are all very professional in nature, and the dynamic of the team is really strong.

Our national selectors have most of the time been great at striking the right balance between performance and attitude, in our pursuits towards winning a Commonwealth Medal or for that matter a World Championship or Olympic Medal too.

They select the team based around someone who they know is capable of bringing home a medal and a group of riders they believe can support and understand the role that they will be there to play within the team.

It’s nice to be back around the Aussie girls, as we really strive each other to be better cyclists, because at the end of the day we want to bring the best result for Australia – everyone wants that to happen.

Plus they all actually understand me when we chat Aussie lingo, unlike my very international trade team.

Cycling is as much physical as it is mental.

It really is… because you can have the best form and the best legs, but if you don’t have it in your head, the belief and the confidence, then it’s much more difficult to get the results that you are striving to achieve.

You won’t be able to perform in the race to perhaps, what you’re completely capable of.

And just as significant is the cohesion you have amongst your teammates… if you don’t believe in your teammates ability or like their attitude towards you or other teammates, then why are you going to sacrifice your chances and the result for them.

In cycling, as I’m sure may other sports and life in general.

What goes around comes around. If you sacrifice yourself time and time again for someone else and they highlight the fact too, then when the time comes for you to have your opportunity to go for the result, you’ll hope they’re willing to do the same for you and you’d know the importance of acknowledging their efforts.

Tiffany Cromwell

Everyone is expected to perform at a certain level, and so you need to be on top of your game at all times so you don’t let the team down.

That’s why it’s so important to have strong support around you.

Us Australian riders, we understand the pressures that come with the sport, and so that is reflected in the way we prepare and recover from the races.

For me personally, I’ve been given an amazing opportunity to be back in the Australian team.

I missed out on making selection for the world championships in Norway last year, and so for me to be back wearing the green and gold is an honour and I plan on enjoying every moment.

Also in narrowly missing out on selection for the 2012 & 2016 olympic games; each of those omissions only drove me harder to improve and develop myself as a rider, to learn from each of those experiences and use that to help me for the future.

My headspace is really strong currently and I’m getting my love for the sport back again, because you go through phases where you can feel like you’re just going through the motions and it’s just a number on the back.

You do just enough of what’s required of you, and sometimes stop pushing that extra bit that is needed.

I guess when this is my 16th year in the sport, you’re always going to go through these tough times.

But to get that hunger and drive back has been amazing and such a good feeling when everything feels like it’s in balance and moving along how I want it to be.

I’m just trying to stay focused right now and stay in the moment.

My whole attitude coming into these games is to wake up knowing that my teammates and I have done everything possible to put ourselves in the best position to win the race.

I want to stand on that start line with no regrets. Just to know that I, and we, are fully prepared.

It’s important each of us knows what plan B, C, D and all the way to Z is if required, if plan A falls apart, and that everyone of us knows our roles and are ready to take the reins to ride for the medal if called upon.

I am confident we will be ready.