Mandy Marquardt

Trexlertown, PA, United States
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Track Sprinter

DOB 07-08-1991

AGE OF DIAGNOSIS 16

YEARS WITH TEAM 11

2021 marks the 100th year since the discovery of insulin. Which keeps everyone and I living with diabetes alive! Grateful to wear this kit, do what I love and inspire, educate and empower everyone affected by diabetes.

PROFILE

Mandy began racing her bicycle at the age of 10, when she lived in Plantation, Florida. She was active with swimming, running and playing tennis, and wanted to compete in triathlons. She began competitively cycling at the age of 10 at the Brian Piccolo Velodrome in nearby Cooper City, selecting the track because it was a safe place to learn. Less than a year later, and with coaching by Mike Fraysse and Betsy Davis, she went on to win two gold medals in the criterium and time trial at the 2003 U.S. Junior Women’s 10-12 Road National Championships in Texas, and a silver medal in the road race.

In 2007, Mandy moved back to Mannheim, Germany, where she had been born, to live with her father. It was a smooth transition for cycling and education, since she spoke fluent German. She continued to race in many endurance road and track cycling events, competing for the German state of Baden-Württemberg. A year later, while undergoing routine V02 max testing and bloodwork, Mandy’s doctors discovered she had elevated blood sugar levels. After two weeks in the hospital, she was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. She was just 16 years old.

Mandy recalls that a doctor told her that she would never be able to compete at a high level in my sport. She told herself to take it one day at a time – stay healthy, continue her education. It was a challenging time. She moved back to Florida in 2010 to live with her mother to complete her senior year in high school, apply to colleges and dial in racing and living with diabetes.

After the move back to southern Florida, Mandy joined a team with other cyclists living with type 1 diabetes, called Team Type 1 at the time, which was a turning point. She continues to be a member of Team Novo Nordisk, a global all-diabetes professional cycling team, who inspire, educate and empower everyone affected by diabetes.

Mandy completed her college education in 2014 from The Pennsylvania State University – Penn State Lehigh Valley campus, and turned her focus to a track cycling career. Her success on the track led to 14 titles at USA Cycling National Championships in collegiate and elite nationals. She was named to the UCI Track Cycling World Cup team for USA Cycling. Since competing at the Pan American Championships since 2016, Mandy has compiled a total of six Pan American Championships medals – one gold, two silver and three bronze.

She was named to the 2016 Olympic Games Long Team for USA Cycling. The female sprint team, ultimately, did not qualify as a nation to represent the U.S., so she focused on Tokyo 2020. On June 11, 2020, USA Cycling announced their Olympic Long Teams for the Road, Track, and Mountain Bike disciplines for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Mandy was named as a member of the Long Team for Women’s Track, with the final selection to be determined in late spring of 2021.

Being part of the USA Cycling National Team has given Mandy a platform to help and inspire others. She is proud to be a role model for young girls to pursue dreams, as well as a role model for people with diabetes to inspire, educate and empower them to live life to the fullest and in 2020, despite COVID-19 restrictions Mandy managed to maintain some momentum on the track and set a new US National Kilo Record.

Mandy is proud to be an ambassador for TrueSport (champions the positive life lessons learned through sport) and the Taylor Hooton Foundation (educating schools and universities nationwide about the dangers of Appearance and Performance Enhancing Drugs). She was honored to be one of 17 athletes who took part in the U.S. Anti-Doping Association’s Project Believe 2020.

Mandy currently resides in Allentown, Penn. with her fiancé, two dogs and two cats. She trains alongside Andrew Harris and Edge Cycling. Her home track is the Valley Preferred Cycling Center in Trexlertown. Her sights are still set on representing Team USA at the Tokyo 2021 Olympic Games.

BEST PERFORMANCES

2020

  • US National Kilo Record
  • 6th – Sprints – UCI Track World Cup – Milton, Canada
  • Named to Olympic Games Long Team, USA Cycling

2019

  • 1st – U.S. National Championships, 500m Time Trial
  • 1st – U.S. National Championships, Sprint
  • 1st – U.S. National Championships, Keirin
  • 3rd – Pan American Championships, Sprint
  • 4th – Sprints at World Cup, in Minsk, Belarus
  • World Championships, Team USA member

2018

  • 2nd – Pan American Championships, Team Sprint
  • World Championships, Team USA member

2017

  • 1st – U.S. National Championships, 500m Time Trial
  • 1st – U.S. National Championships, Team Sprint
  • 2nd – U.S. National Championships, Sprint
  • 2nd – U.S. National Championships, Keirin
  • 1st – Pan American Championships, Team Sprint
  • 2nd – Pan American Championships, Keirin
  • 3rd – Pan American Championships, 500m Time Trial

Diabetes Q&A

Tell us about when you were diagnosed and how you found out?

I went in for metabolic-lactate threshold testing and blood work. Shortly after, they told me my blood sugars were high and I went straight to the hospital where I was diagnosed.

What was your initial reaction?

At first, I was shocked and in denial. I didn’t know much about diabetes, so I was really confused on how I was going to manage it and continue to race my bike.

How did your family/friends/fellow athletes react?

Since I was very active, they were surprised, but they were eager to learn more about type 1 diabetes; and they were very supportive.

Did you think your days as an athlete were over? Did others? What did your health care professionals say?

At the hospital, the doctor said I was likely never going to be able to compete at a high level again. But after I learned more about diabetes management, I was determined to prove that I could and take control of my lifestyle. I love cycling, and it’s a big part of my life. I could never let anything take that away from me.

What was it like riding with diabetes and how did you adjust?

It was a difficult adjustment, but I worked closely with my diabetes educator, monitoring my blood sugars and learning how different types of foods affected my blood glucose levels. It was all trial and error, but after some time, I learned what worked best for me.

Sports Q&A

Tell us about how you got started in your sport.

My dad was an active cyclist. I was into running and swimming and was interested in doing triathlons, so my parents took me to the Brian Piccolo Velodrome in Fort Lauderdale, FL. That’s where I first learned how to ride a track bike.

When did you start competing?

At the age of 10.

What do you think is your biggest achievement in your athletic career?

Winning four national championships (road and track), winning five Florida State Track Champions, and?two Collegiate National Championships.

What is your favorite memory from a race/competition?

I have a lot, but it’s always great to exceed my own expectations, learn and improve on various skills.

Being part of Team Novo Nordisk

How did you come to join Team Novo Nordisk?

A rider on the team put me in touch with the team director.

How has your life changed since you joined the team (both as an athlete and as a person)?

It’s helped me to realize that if I want to race and train at my best, I need to manage my diabetes. Racing alongside other athletes with diabetes has given me a positive outlook about what it means to be living and racing with diabetes.