RECENTLY retired Tasmanian cycling star Belinda Goss has been announced as the ambassador for this year's Christmas carnivals series.
The 28-year-old retired a few weeks ago but is finding it hard to stay away from the sport that has been a big part of her life.
Yesterday she was guest speaker at the Sports Carnivals Association of Tasmania's launch and was officially crowned as the new ambassador.
On Sunday night, Goss was a guest at the Stan Siejka Cycling Classic in Launceston, where she waved the flag at the finish line and also acted as a commentator for the women's race alongside Mike Tomalaris, of SBS.
Sports Carnivals Association of Tasmania president Mike Gunson said Goss had been a wonderful contributor to Tasmanian cycling, and it was fitting that she be named as ambassador in her retiring year.
``She has ridden at the top for the past 16 years,'' he said.
Goss has completed a degree in marketing, and yesterday she said she was interested in pursuing a career in public relations.
During her career on the bike, Goss was an outstanding performer at the Tasmanian carnivals and made an impact when women's races became part of the series in 2004.
She won the Latrobe and Devonport wheels in the first season and went on to win the Devonport Wheel again in 2009, the 2010 Launceston Wheel and the 2011 Burnie Wheel.
Goss said one of her roles would be to welcome interstate and overseas cyclists to Tasmania and to explain to them the vagaries of handicap racing.
Gunson said the quality of cyclists and runners at this year's carnivals was unsurpassed.
``We have 10 cyclists and three athletes from the London Olympic Games competing here,'' he said.
``I cannot recall a series where there have been so many current Olympic representatives, and these numbers will guarantee racing of the highest quality.''
All primary school children from Burnie to Latrobe will be given free passes to the carnivals.