Amy Dombroski gets muddy in Kentucky at Worlds. © Cathy Fegan-Kim

Amy Dombroski, shown here getting muddy in Kentucky at Worlds, was a suburb competitor and remains an inspirational figure in the cyclocross community. © Cathy Fegan-Kim

Last October, Amy Dombroski was tragically taken from the cycling community. She was an American cyclocross racer with such rare talent that she was able to compete for full seasons overseas in Europe. Her candid sense of humor was prevalent at all times, and a smile rarely left her face.

The Amy D. Foundation was created in her memory, with its major goal to help aspiring female cyclists and help them achieve lofty goals. One of its projects, the Amy D. Racing program, has selected Erica Zaveta as its first recipient of an elite race sponsorship for the 2014-15 cyclocross season.

Zaveta, 25, recently graduated from Brevard College, and now works part time at coaching company Sigma Human Performance. If you were following last year’s Cyclocross Nationals in Boulder closely, you might remember her name: she took an impressive second place in the collegiate division II race behind Christina Birch.

Erica Zaveta competes in many forms of cycling, but cyclocross is her passion.

Erica Zaveta competes in many forms of cycling, but cyclocross is her passion.

Last year, she attracted the attention of Redline and represented their team during and after the Midsummer Nights Cyclocross, where she landed on the podium at third. Her impressive performances include a score of top-ten finishes in the women’s elite UCI fields, including a seventh and ninth place in Cincinnati, top-tens at the Derby City Cup, Jingle Cross and the Supercross Cup, as well as an astounding third place finish on the second day of the North Carolina Grand Prix.

Her goals for this season are to finish consistently in the top ten in elite women’s UCI races, with hopes of standing on the podium a few times as well. So far her schedule looks to include CrossVegas, Boulder, the Trek Collective Cup, the KMC Cyclo-cross Festival, Rapha Super Cross Gloucester, Full Moon Vista at Ellison, Jingle Cross, CXLA, Bend, and Nationals in Austin, TX.

Zaveta raced for the U.S. National team on the mountain bike and has experience racing at the top levels in the U.S. and Europe. Erica has spent much of 2014 focusing on the domestic road circuit, while also finishing top 10 at the Mountain Bike National Championships in the pro field. But her focus is cyclocross.

“Erica is a great match for the Amy D. sponsorship,” said program manager Donn Kellogg. “She’s a top rider on the road, mountain bike, and cyclocross, and has really dedicated herself to the sport. I guess you could say she is a lot like Amy.”

Stay tuned to cxmagazine.com, where we will catch up with Erica Zaveta and find out some of her thoughts on the season ahead.