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Alta States

Lisa Lefroy: Embracing life to the fullest

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There was more to it than that though. “Cedric had never had a girlfriend before who could chase him down the mountain,” she admits. “I think I really kept him on his toes.”

It must have been one heck of a strong connection for both. For two weeks later, Lisa had jumped on a plane and was headed to Europe…

For the next few years, Lisa moved back and forth between Andorra (where she and Cedric set up house) and Whistler. “It’s funny how small the world becomes when you live out of a suitcase,” she says. “Suddenly everywhere is just a plane ride away.”

It was while living in Andorra that she and Gracia set up a small athlete and event management company. During a promotional tour of Panama in 2004, Cedric managed to convince his hosts to put on a mountain biking show to go along with a big music festival they were promoting. “So they called me up and asked if I would be interested in managing that part of the show,” says Lisa. “And I said: ‘No problem. I do this all the time’ Meanwhile, I’d never put on a show in my life!”

No matter. Three weeks later, Lisa was boarding a plane to Panama with a power point presentation and a proposal for a fast-moving bike and skateboard show. “So there I was,” she says, “a blonde, 26-year-old girl sitting in a boardroom with 12 Panamanian businessmen all speaking Spanish. I admit it — I was definitely sweating …”

The festival promoters must have liked what she had to say. Less than a month after her meeting, she got the contract — and the budget she asked for. “It turned out to be quite a show,” she says. “I brought 25 guys down with me — 13 bikers, five skateboarders, two photographers, five builders — and a whole film crew. And we crushed it!” She pauses for a moment. “You know, you forget sometimes that people in other countries don’t always get to see these kinds of things. I mean, if you’re in California or B.C., watching somebody go upside down on a bike is no big thing. But in a place like Panama — well, let’s just say the response was overwhelming. It was the best thing I’ve ever done in my life!”