Durango High School has seen many athletes pass through its halls and on to success in their athletic careers, and junior Maddie Jo Robbins is carrying on the legacy. As a competitive athlete involved with multiple sports, she has just been selected as Colorado’s Sportswoman of the year for mountain biking.
This award is given out every year to female athletes all around Colorado by the Colorado Women’s Sports fund, meaning that there are women recognized for many different sports from cross-country running to volley ball to mountain biking. It can be given out for several different reasons, according to Robbins, and can be connected to major athletic accomplishments that year.
“My performance at a national level and international level influenced it and they also enjoy seeing hard work” said Robbins. Her hard work and sequence of accomplishments sent her from nationals race in West Virginia and then to the world competition held last fall in Switzerland. Robbins performed spectacularly at each of these events, placing 1st at nationals and 34th at Worlds.
Another requirement is being nominated, which was done by Robbin’s ski team coach Leah LeSage and athletic director Adam Bright, “She is helpful and supportive of her teammates… and with all of her travel she maintains an excellent GPA and I think she deserves some recognition for all of her hard work,” said LeSage. Robbins expressed her appreciation for being nominated and recognized at DHS despite the fact that the Mountain Bike team is not traditionally supported by DHS. This shows leaps and bounds made by our athletics department.
“I know she wears our colors proud whenever she’s out competing, so anytime we can represent one of our students, whether it’s through a CHSAA event or not we need to do it,” said Bright. He acknowledges her impressive way of competing and appreciates how she handled an injury to her wrist this year, which prevented her from participating in the ski races last season. Despite this barrier, it didn’t stop her from helping with the team in managing it, encouragement, and even a bit of coaching.
“To me she exemplifies who we want representing Durango High School,” said Bright. Her wrist injury was only one of many obstacles she faced this year, forcing Robbins to push herself even harder. However, this lead her to perform better than ever before. Her mother, Denise Robbins, witness this raw grit first hand.
“To me, her determination to succeed and strive to achieve her goals never wavered despite the many unexpected and challenging obstacles she faced in 2018. Through it all, she reached her goals and achieved great success,” said D. Robbin. Setbacks in training with the 416 fire, injury, surgery, and tough training conditions didn’t stop M. Robbins from competing in and winning states and
With all efforts combined, Maddie Jo travelled to Denver las month to accept the award. Speaking of inner tenacity, last month was national women’s month, creating a perfect opportunity to represent women in the state in such a neat way.
“Its cool that it shows that there are women out there who do amazing things and are great athletes and it shows just how far we’ve come as a society, like years ago women weren’t even allow to play high school sports,” said Robbins. Athletic legends and olympic competitor Lindsey Vonn was also awarded at the event and MiKaela Shiffrin was given the overall sportswoman award. With such idols winning similar awards, this achievement is truly very special.
“I think the most inspiring part of the award and banquet is having my name on the same sheet of paper as those amazing role models,” said Robbins. M. Robbins is a perfect example of how, with hardwork and perseverance, you can achieve great things despite the adversity you may face. She herself has become a role model in Durango community and has especially brought athletic pride to DHS.
“My husband, Jeff, and I are so proud of Maddie Jo and excited for her to win the 2018 Sportswomen of Colorado Award for mountain biking,” said D. Robbins. Despite such magnitude of the award, Robbins is on track to following the legacies of such heroines and pursue the next level of athletic success.
“It was super inspiring to be amongst so many great female athletes and people that I look up to and what it gives me in the future is the confidence that I could one day be there too,” said Robbins.