Natasha Hansen

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Natasha Hansen
UCI Track World Championships 2020 098.jpg
Natasha Hansen (2020)
Personal information
Born (1989-11-15) 15 November 1989 (age 31)
Takapuna, New Zealand
Height167 cm (5 ft 6 in)
Weight63 kg (139 lb)
Team information
DisciplineTrack

Natasha Hansen (born 15 November 1989) is a New Zealand track cyclist who has represented her country at the 2012 and 2016 Summer Olympics.

Early life[edit]

Hansen was born in 1989 in Takapuna on Auckland's North Shore and is of Samoan descent.[1] She grew up in Canterbury and played netball for the Canterbury Flames including trials at the national level. Her motivation for taking up track cycling during secondary school was to increase her fitness for netball.[2]

Career[edit]

At her second national trials, she set new national records in sprint and 500 m, which qualified her for the 2007 UCI Juniors World Championships held in Aguascalientes, Mexico. This was her first international event and gained her a training place in World Cycling Centre in the French speaking part of Switzerland, to where she moved. Hansen moved back to New Zealand in the following year (2008) and moved to Invercargill to train at the Invercargill ILT Velodrome, then the base of the New Zealand cycling team. During her time there in the Southland city, she trained as an air traffic controller at Invercargill Airport.[2][3] At the 2011 Oceania Cycling Championships, she gained titles in team sprint, keirin, and the 500 m event.[2] This secured her a place at the 2012 Summer Olympics for the Keirin and the sprint.[4][5] Her preparation was distracted by her best friend dying of cancer, and Hansen returned to New Zealand in July 2012 for the funeral.[2] She came 12th in the sprint and 11th in the Keirin.[2]

She took 2013 off from competitive cycling and looked for another opportunity to keep herself fit. She took up boxing to train for a charity event in Christchurch. She competed in 'Fight for Christchurch 2013' in November, raising funds for the Ronald McDonald House South Island. The event itself raised in excess of $200,000 for selected charities.[6]

Hansen regained her motivation for track cycling and moved to Cambridge on 1 January 2015; the national team had relocated to the Avantidrome when it officially opened in April 2014. At the same time, she relocated to Hamilton Airport for work.[7] She teamed up with Katie Schofield for the team sprint and came fourth at a World Cup meeting in Cali, Colombia, in January 2015.[8][9] Hansen was competing with Schofield and Stephanie McKenzie for selection for the 2016 Rio Olympics when she came fifth in the individual sprint in March 2016 at the 2016 UCI Track Cycling World Championships in London, and this performance secured her place at her second Olympics.[8] Hansen was confirmed by the New Zealand Olympic Committee as part of the first track cyclists chosen for Rio on 7 April 2016.[10] The remainder of the team was confirmed in July, and that included Olivia Podmore who was the other half of the sprint team.[11] Hansen and Podmore did not survive the qualification round in the team sprint.[12]

At the 2018 Commonwealth Games, Hansen won the silver medal in the individual sprint and bronze in the keirin, and was part of the New Zealand team (with Emma Cumming) that won silver in the team sprint.[13][14][15]

Career results[edit]

2015
1st Sprint, Champions of Sprint
Oceania Track Championships
2nd Keirin
2nd Team Sprint (with Katie Schofield)
2nd 500m Time Trial
3rd Sprint
Festival of Speed
2nd Keirin
2nd Sprint
2016
2nd Team Sprint, GP von Deutschland im Sprint (with Olivia Podmore)
2017
ITS Melbourne – DISC Grand Prix
2nd Keirin
3rd Sprint
3rd Sprint, Oceania Track Championships
2018
Commonwealth Games
2nd Team Sprint
2nd Sprint
3rd Keirin

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Natasha Hansen – Top Track Cyclist On Her Way To Rio Olympics". Tagata Pasifika. Retrieved 6 June 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Natasha Hansen" (PDF). New Zealand Olympic Committee. Retrieved 13 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Natasha Hansen Athlete Profile". hpsnz.org.nz. Archived from the original on 11 February 2016. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  4. ^ "London 2012 Sprint Women Final". Olympic.org. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  5. ^ "London 2012 Keirin Women Final". Olympic.org. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  6. ^ "Natasha Hansen inspired by fresh challenge". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  7. ^ Wright, Ed (31 January 2015). "Natasha Hansen back on board". RoadCycling.co.nz. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  8. ^ a b Leggat, David (9 April 2016). "Cycling: Hansen back on the bike for Rio". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  9. ^ "Strong opening day at UCI track cycling World Cup for Kiwi cyclists". Stuff.co.nz. 17 January 2015. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  10. ^ "New Zealand's world champion sprint cyclists confirmed to chase gold at Rio Olympics". Stuff.co.nz. 7 April 2016. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  11. ^ Geenty, Mark (9 July 2016). "Hayden Roulston returns in 'toughest Olympic team we've had to pick'". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  12. ^ Geenty, Mark (13 August 2016). "Rio Olympics 2016: Odd shaped track stymies New Zealand pursuit team". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
  13. ^ "Cycling Track | Results Women's Sprint Finals – Gold – Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games". results.gc2018.com. Retrieved 5 November 2018.
  14. ^ "Cycling Track | Results Women's Keirin Finals 1–6 – Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games". results.gc2018.com. Retrieved 5 November 2018.
  15. ^ "Cycling Track | Results Women's Team Sprint Finals – Gold – Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games". results.gc2018.com. Retrieved 5 November 2018.

External links[edit]