Cyclist Katerina Nash’s storied career spans nearly three decades, with five Olympic appearances and eight UCI World Cup wins. Her teammate, Anna Yamauchi, is an up-and-coming star making her mark in the off-road bike racing world. We've known Katerina for the past few years, and were honored to partner up with her and Anna this past summer to develop custom editions of our Race Day Bag, Pilot Bar Bag, and Seat Bag ALL MOUNTAIN. The bags feature a combination of Black X50, VX21, and 500D Cordura / 275 Dyneema Ripstop, with some Purple VX21 for a nice pop of color. Check out our interview below to learn more about this inspiring duo:
Katerina and Anna, tell us a bit about yourselves, where you’re from, and your journey to get to this point.
KN: I’m originally from the Czech Republic and have been living in CA for over 20 years. I’m a former skier turned cyclist and have been riding ever since. I’ve had a long career including five Olympics (XC ski and MTB), World Champ medals, and World Cup podiums in both MTB XC and Cyclocross. When I’m not racing, I work for the International Cycling Federation.
AY: I’ve made a quick transition into the professional bike world, building upon my passions as a former competitive skier, surfer, and runner. Raised in Truckee, CA, I fell in love with mountain biking on backyard trails and the unbeatable Tahoe terrain. I’m a recent graduate from Cal Poly with a degree in Architectural Engineering.
What’s the story of your bike team?
KN: The idea of our team started during a dog hike. The unlikely partnership of mature vs young athlete was born from my desire to help Anna take the next step into the racing world, before she branches off on her own in 2024. Our team is more of a partnership for good times and shredvocating trails. I feel lucky to share time with Anna because of her positive energy and passion for the outdoors. We just need some trails to melt here in Truckee so we can finally do some riding together!
AY: What's team #shredvocate about? Riding hard, shredding, and sharing the joy of riding a bike.
We’ve collaborated on some awesome custom bags that we’re excited to see you rock! How do these pieces complement your daily lives?
KN: I’m a big fan of backpacks that can fit everything. The simple yet practical design of the Race Day Bag makes my life better; I can organize everything inside and be ready for a race or a travel day. As a bike racer I always carry on my bike shoes because that is one thing that is hard to replace in case luggage gets lost. It’s nice to have separate pockets for my shoes, computer, and passport.
I have never had a larger size bar bag and can’t wait to see how it all works and how much I can fit in. As I've shifted from XC and CX style racing to longer distance, my training rides have increased in time. I always need more food and extra gear to be ready for a change of weather or sudden hunger. The Pilot Bar Bag will be my new friend on those longer days!
I grew up with a lot of handmade clothing and very much appreciate the craftsmanship of ILE. I bought an ILE pack a few years back and have always liked what the brand was all about. I stopped by the Berkeley shop a few times (mainly to see the shop dog Kira!) and watched the company grow over the years. I’m very excited to be sponsored by ILE now.
AY: 4+ hour training rides in the wilderness call for lots of snacks, extra layers, and a trusty flat kit. I've stuffed my pockets too full, opted to travel lighter, and always regret it. I am so excited to have spacious, durable, and stylish bags to rock on all my adventures! Some bar bags bounce around, but even with its bigger size, the Pilot Bar Bag sits nice and snug on my bars. I'll have all the room for extra snacks to share, and can even bring a burrito or two along for the ride!!
I have stinky shoes, often finish races covered in mud, and struggle with pre-race organization. The Race Day Bag is an amazing solution to all my problems! I can stash that gross kit in one compartment, store my shoes in another, and tuck my helmet into the exterior mesh pocket. There's plenty of space for water bottles, a top pocket for food, and mesh zips to put all my small tools in.
There's something to be said about a handmade and quality product. ILE sets themselves apart in the fine details and you can feel just how good the material and construction is. I imagine I'll be rocking these bags for a very, very long time!
Photography by Kate Austin Photography
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