GUNN-RITA DAHLE FLESJÅ

The 'grand dame' of mountain

She needs no introduction. The 'grand dame' of mountain biking and 2018 European Marathon Champion has won ten World and nine European Championships in cross-country and marathon and managed to secure the gold medal for her native Norway at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. To top it all off, Gunn-Rita is leading the all-time World Cup wins list with a total of 30 wins in a professional mountain bike racing career that spanned over more than 20 years. She overcame serious illness in 2007 to get back on the podium and even continued to win races in 2009, despite having given birth to her son that same year. 

In the following years, she continued to prove she had what it took to compete and win at the very highest levels of the sport, taking home Gold at the World Championship Marathon race in 2013 and showcasing the grit, focus and determination that have been the hallmarks of her racing career at a point others would have opted for a comfortable retirement. Gunn-Rita hung up the World Cup 'racing wheels' in 2018 and joined the illustrious group of MERIDA brand ambassadors, having ridden for the brand since 2002. Since her 'new appointment' as a brand ambassador, Gunn-Rita has been putting lots of effort during her travels into encouraging people to ride their bikes as a sport as well as a form of transport.