Expecting Olympian Willock to sit out 2012 season

Erinne Willock (Tibco) tried to counter attack when te breakwas caught, but without success

Erinne Willock (Tibco) tried to counter attack when te breakwas caught, but without success (Image credit: CJ Farquharson)

2008 Olympian and 2012 Olympic hopeful road cyclist Erinne Willock of Canada announced on Tuesday that she will put her Olympic dreams on hold as she and husband Tony Zarsadias are expecting the birth of her first child, only days before the start of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

"The last couple months have been quite a bit different than I had envisioned since the last Olympics. To say I've switched gears is a big understatement. I have very quickly gone from having complete focus for the 2012 Olympic year to now having a healthy and happy pregnancy being my new and exciting reality," said Willock, who competed for Canada at the 2008 Olympic Summer Games in Beijing and at the 2006 and 2010 Commonwealth Games.

Willock, an integral member of the Canadian Women's Road Cycling Team, boasts an impressive cycling resume, which includes several victories on the professional racing circuit and many Top 10 at UCI World Cups throughout her career.

"I will definitely miss racing in 2012, as this is such an important year. Nevertheless, I'll be cheering on my teammates from both Team TIBCO and the Canadian Cycling Team. You can be sure that I'll be glued to my computer and TV checking the latest results, race reports and live coverage. There is so much depth in women's cycling right now, especially Canadian Cycling, that it will be a great year to be a fan," said Willock.

Speaking to her teammates of the Canadian Cycling Team, Willock is confident that Canada will thrive at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, this summer and bring home some medals.

"To my teammates on the Canadian Cycling Team, I want to wish you all the best of luck! I am very excited to watch you all excel. For those who are vying for those precious spots on the Olympic Team for London, I hope you enjoy the experience, and more importantly have medals to bring home to show me!"

Denise Kelly, head coach of the Canadian Road Cycling Team, will miss Willock in the peloton this summer. "Erinne is an undoubtedly an outstanding cyclist - one of Canada's finest. Her outgoing personality and aggressive racing style will definitely be missed this summer in the peloton across the world, and I join the staff at the Canadian Cycling Association to wish her a safe and healthy pregnancy. We are looking forward to enhancing our development programs with this new cyclist that will be born this summer."

Willock won the 2011 Women's Prestige Series and was second in the GC at the Redlands Bicycle Classic and Nature Valley Grand Prix.

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