No. 22 Racing's Krista Ciminera on gravel rides in Tuscany, cycling as community, and the joy of a clean, simple design
Krista Ciminera, a registered nurse originally from New York, took her first ride on her No. 22 Broken Arrow in one of the most iconic cycling destinations in Europe—the route of L’Eroica, a vintage-themed cycling event in Tuscany, Italy.
“It was the most quintessential way you could ride a bike like this,” she says, noting that when her new bike was first delivered, she had to immediately pack it right back up into her bike box for travel. “I was going to bring a road bike for the trip, but was so thankful for the disc brakes on my Broken Arrow as it was a route full of mixed terrain.”
Ciminera is the newest member of the No. 22 Racing team. Her passion is off-road riding and while she describes herself as “not competitive in the the slightest,” she isn’t afraid to tackle big challenges on two wheels
While the Italian adventure was her first official ride on her new Broken Arrow, Ciminera has been riding forever. Today, she calls Philadelphia home, but she points to years living in Brooklyn in her early 20s and its deep cycling culture that got her exciting about making cycling a significant part of her life.
“I was really into the punk and hard rock scene at the time,” she explains, noting that there is a lot of crossover between that world and cycling. A heavy emphasis on self-sustainability, a “do-it-yourself mentality” and environmental ethics are at the core of both cultures.
“I worked at a bike coop for a bit and from there started to explore other areas of the cycling scene in New York, such as messenger biking and alleycat racing," she says. "I love that cycling is a cheap and easy way to get around in the city.” While dealing with a difficult time in life after the passing of her father, Ciminera says that the communities she found in the punk and Brooklyn cycling worlds proved to be a really positive force in her life and she began to get more invested in the sport.
With a passion for being in the outdoors, cyclocross was a natural fit. Much like alleycat racing in her eyes—short, spectator-friendly races that were accessible to all—cyclocross was an intriguing new activity that instantly got her even more excited about riding. As she connected with many of the members of No. 22 Racing, she realized that the team was a great fit.
As a nurse, Ciminera says training is hard after 12-hour shifts, but she makes time for it because she suffers from a kidney disease and her doctor recommends lots of exercise. Her next race is the Westchester Cross Race, and this will be the first time she’s racing on her Broken Arrow.
Favouring a simple, elegant look, Ciminera decided she didn’t want to make any color customizations to her Broken Arrow. “I probably have the most boring bike out of everyone on the team,” she says laughing, “But I just love the raw finish. I’m a classic person, and I want the natural beauty of the bike to speak for itself.”View this post on Instagram
What better way to celebrate #newbikeday than breaking it in on the gravel roads of Tuscany. My new Broken Arrow from @22bikes is not only stunning but handles like a dream and the @industry_nine wheelset puts it into motion like no other wheels I’ve ever had! So much help went into procuring and assembling this bike, so thank you @no22racing, @krysblakemore, @heatherseagravessomatics, @jessica.fae, @bicycletherapy, and @dan_action, as well as the rest of my teammates. I am in love 😍
Her King Cage bottle cage and titanium seat post are some small details she added to the bike.
“When we found out about the partnership with No. 22, I was so excited because I really needed a new cross bike and I loved all my teammates' bikes,” she says, adding that there's nothing better than a new bike just in time for cross season.