I hadn’t heard of this Russian rider, mainly because I don’t do Instagram, until news of her death broke today.
The usual muppets are out in force, saying that bikes are death machines, that she should have thought of her daughter before taking risks, that she should have toed the line and not drawn attention to herself. That death is somehow justified if you are a beautiful woman riding a motorcycle in inappropriate clothing. Though she did team her denim cut-offs with a back protector.
But she wrote this, about riding:
“Thank you for never failing me, for making my lonely nights better, for helping me to forget troubles of my life, for training my body and my brain.
“I am grateful to it for the sparkles in my eyes, for the warm wind blowing on my cheeks when my visor is open, for unbelievable excitement and a feeling of flowing in the air, for doses of adrenaline.”
“Thank you for gifting me freedom… and I know that I am not alone. There are thousands like me, those madly in love with their metal horses.”
It is unlikely that I will pose on an ice-ready Suzuki in a bikini and a smile. But I totally relate to Olga’s words. Biking is freedom, and excitement, and not being alone.