BFC 2012 Women’s Champion: Ruth Sherman (a.k.a. Ruthless Sherman)
Time: 2:01:58 (Women’s Course Record)
(Ruth raced in the Women’s Cyclocross, 1-99)
From: Spencer, NY
Team: Corning/No Tubes
Occupation: Ecologist, teaches and does research at Cornell University
Cycling & Athletic Experience: “I didn’t start cycling competitively until I turned 48. I used to play a lot of basketball but I retired from that because it was so physical. I decided that while my knees were still intact I should walk away from that sport and try something else.”
“I do mostly local races almost every weekend, April to November. After the road racing season I do Cyclocross.”
Ruth went to Nationals 2008 & Worlds 2012 (in Louisville), and won bronze medal in both.
Any Special Training? “Not really. I just try to get out on my bike a lot.” Ruth rides with a big cycling group and it seems like she really rides for the fun of it, “When it stops being fun, I’ll stop doing it. It’s my social life now. There’s lots of good hilly dirt roads around here so we ride those a lot. We mix it up, doing leisure rides and training rides.”
Cycling Goals: “I’m coming back to the Black Fly and I’m gonna bring some friends.” This year Ruth is looking to do Ultracross as well.
Why the BFC? “I was encouraged to do it by (2011 Champ) Liz Lukowski.”
How is the BFC different than other races? “The reason I like the BFC – it’s not that there are a lot of women but that there are a lot of racers and I can race with any of them (men, women, old, young, etc.) as opposed to sanctioned races where you can only race with those in your category. So, I like that it’s non-sanctioned.”
Ruth then mentioned USA Cycling’s attempt to keep people out of non-sanctioned races and says, “I want to support these kind of races (like the BFC). People should be able to compete with whoever they want.”
How can we improve the BFC? “The Beer Garden was nice! I wouldn’t change much except for doing awards faster.”
Etc.: When not cycling she travels a lot for work, doing conservation work in China and the Dominican Republic. Ruth’s husband is a professor at Cornell and the cycling team photographer.