Zoe Cuthbert calls herself the ‘flying raccoon on a bike’ on her Instagram page. 

It’s a moniker that’s stuck with her since she was 12. “I just missed the part where you get old and change it to something normal,” laughs Zoe.

At 20, Zoe is already one of Australia’s most successful young cyclists. A skilled mountain bike rider, Zoe is the only Canberra-based member of the Trek-Shimano Australia Elite Mountain Bike Team. 

She has represented Australia at the XCO World Championships, coming 5th in the junior Cross-Country competition in Mont St Anne, Canada in 2019. 

Zoe started racing when she was seven. After tagging along to a race her mum Tara was taking part in, she decided to join in on the kids race. “I lost my chain and came dead last, but I was already hooked on racing.”

Zoe loves riding. When asked what she most enjoys about developing her bike skills and competing with other world-class athletes, Zoe exclaims: 

“So many things! The adventure, the challenge to constantly push my limits, the community and people I’ve met through bikes, the new and exciting places I get to travel to!”



Zoe is proud to represent Australia in MTB competitions

“I absolutely love head-to-head racing. I can’t wait to be travelling overseas and racing my bike again. I do get nervous, but I’m a big believer that a few nerves before a race make you go faster!”

The COVID-19 pandemic has put a hold on travelling overseas, but Zoe is looking forward to competing and being able to represent Australia once the border re-opens.

“Representing my country is amazing. I especially love having the opportunity to represent the mountain bike community who have encouraged and supported me over the years.

Like many Australian athletes, Zoe sometimes finds there are challenges when competing on the world stage.

“As in all sports, once you’re competing at the top-end a lot of travel is required. Bikes and travel certainly aren’t cheap. I’m lucky enough to get support from companies like Parkitect Australia to allow me to do the sport I love.”

“There’s also much less depth of field in Australia. Being so far from Europe, especially during COVID, makes it hard to gain the technical and hard racing experience needed to stay on top.”


Aiming to be an inspiration to younger Australian MTB riders

Zoe has been inspired by many of Australia’s elite women athletes. She’s now pleased to take her turn as a role model for younger women and girls. 

“I definitely try to be a good role model. There’s nothing more rewarding than a parent coming up to me and telling me how I’ve inspired their daughter to hop on a bike!

“For me, anyone who loves the sport and pushes their limits inspires me. The elite women racing XCO, freestyle riders doing massive jumps and tricks. The beginners getting out of their comfort zone at local club races. Even bike-packers riding across countries. I also admire the dedication of trail builders and event organisers.”

As well as keeping up her own training and competing program, Zoe is involved in the Canberra mountain bike community where she coaches and helps organise the Dirt Crits series of races for junior riders. 

Zoe is also studying a Bachelor of Design part-time at ANU and works as a freelance graphic designer.  

“It can get stressful juggling studying, working and training. Lots of studying gets done in the car while I’m riding to races and training after long day’s work. But I love learning new things and I enjoy the creative outlet it gives me. 

“I think it’s important to have a balance. As much as I love bike-riding, I need other things happening in my life!”


Being a Parkitect Australia Brand Ambassador is a natural step for Zoe

Zoe is pleased to become one of Parkitect Australia’s new brand ambassadors. After all, she learned to ride on a pump track! 

“Pump tracks are where I learned, and am still learning, how to pump, ‘manual’ and jump. They’re where I hang out with friends. Where the kids I coach always nag me to go ride and where I compete in the odd race.

“Unlike other mountain bike tracks, they’re contained, making them the perfect spot to supervise kids or hang out with your friends. They’re also unique because they provide a challenge for all levels of riders, from kids on balance bikes to the best riders in the world. 

“Skills learnt on a pump track are critical for gaining and maintaining speed in other forms of mountain biking.”

As a Parkitect Australia Brand Ambassador, Zoe will spread the word about why pump tracks are the perfect place to learn to ride, increase your skills and have fun.

“Fundamentally riding bikes is fun. Having fun is how people start and what keeps them riding. Pump tracks epitomise this. If you ever forget how much fun riding is, just go to a pump track! Who couldn’t get behind the idea of having pump tracks everywhere?”


Read more about Parkitect Australia’s Brand Ambassador’s [here]

Published On: June 11th, 2021Categories: Brand Ambassadors