LOMBARD QUALIFIES FOR 2016 OLYMPICS
The Guam Cycling Federation is proud to announce that its current road and mountain bike national champion, Dr. Peter Lombard, 40, of Maite, has qualified to represent Guam in the upcoming Olympic games in Rio De Janeiro.
Lombard, earned the title of 2016 Guam National MTB Champion in February, which qualified him to compete in the UCI Oceania Mountain Bike Cross Country Championship this past March in Queenstown, New Zealand. As with many sports, cycling in the Oceania region is dominated by the powerhouse countries of Australia and New Zealand. They routinely produce high caliber professional cyclists for both road and mountain biking. In the UCI Oceania MTB Championships, both countries took the top spots. “They (Australia and New Zealand) did well enough in qualification that there was a third spot allocated to the next ranked country in Oceania. By virtue of competing at the Oceania Mountain Bike Championship this year, I was able to earn points for Guam” remarked Lombard. Those points secured Lombard’s spot to the Olympics.
“When I won the Guam National Championship race I started to believe it was possible (to qualify for the Olympics)” said Lombard. “But I still wrestled with a lot of self-doubt, particularly when considering the gap between the talent at the professional levels. Guam's unique position in Oceania really made this dream more attainable” he added.
The goal of qualifying for the Olympics for Lombard was a delicate balancing act for the ophthalmologist. “Making training a priority while also just starting a business has been quite a challenge. I've had incredible support from the Guam cycling community, in particular GCF (Guam Cycling Federation) and the Horton family. Former Guam Olympian, Derek Horton and his wife Monessa, have been very encouraging, especially when I had reservations about continuing to train towards this goal.”
Lombard shared some advice for local mountain bikers aspiring to represent Guam in future Olympics – “As difficult as it has been to get off island to race, that has also been very important. I would encourage other cyclists to try to train as much as possible off-road and to seek assistance from some of our more experienced mountain bikers in Guam, and to race as much as possible in our GCF mountain bike races.”
Dr. Peter Lombard was born on Guam and attended St. John’s School in upper Tumon. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1998 as valedictorian, and studied medicine at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine where he specialized in ophthalmology. He is the owner of Lombard Health and is the son of Dr. Gabriel and Mrs. Kathleen Lombard of Pago Bay.