Ambassadors


All the news from the Cotic Brand Ambassadors...


20/07/2018 - Kelly's Bikepacking Adventure

Bikepacking

Kelly takes the Escapade bikepacking in Scotland

Our ambassador Kelly has been exploring Scotland, ticks, midges and all. She left her Rocket at home and took the Escapade instead. She tells us about it here.

When asked if I was free to join a bikepacking trip in Scotland with Komoot and Cyclist mag, I practically jumped at the opportunity. Having got the taste for bike packing earlier in the year I was super keen to head out again on another adventure. This time with actual camping on the agenda, so no fancy air B&B for me. Fiola had planned our ride on Komoot which was a gravel ride, so the kind folk at Cotic loaned me their adventure bike for the trip, the Escapade, which has drop bars (YIKESSSS). Tyres wise I ran WTB resolute- they are cracking tyres and WTB aren’t wrong when they call them their ‘set-it-and-forget-it tire that keeps on keepin’ on ‘. My trusted and tested WTB women’s Koda pro saddle and Burgtec flat pedals. I didn’t fancy clipping in with all the weight I’d have on the bike (visions of me falling down some mountain side bike and bags attached, no thanks).

Bike setup sorted, now for packing. I’d asked my good friends Hannah and Nicole for advice on what I should take as they’ve both been on far greater bikepacking missions than me, and it’s also good to get others tips incase you’ve forgotten something super important, like underwear (thanks Hannah).

Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

I have my brilliant Polaris bags to load up with all my kit, with an extra edition to the bag squad from Cotic, their new waterproof frame bag. So bike and bags sorted, all that’s next was the camping essentials. I have a small, very lightweight Outdoor Gear “backpacker 1’ tent, weighing in a just 1.3kg and also a super lightweight Forclaz sleeping bag that packs up super small and is 985g along with a Forclaz air matt weighing 500g. All of these I took out of their original bags and distributed them between my handlebar bag and seat post bag. Polaris’s handlebar bag is waterproof, so I put my sleeping bag, down jacket and spare clothing in there and the tent got stuffed into the seat post bag.

Then everything else including the kitchen sink… I compiled a list:

  • Stove
  • Mytimug
  • Gas
  • Lighter
  • Food-dehydrated meals (firepot outdoor food)
  • Water bottles x4
  • Cutlery
  • Torch
  • Warm jacket
  • Change of socks
  • Leggings
  • First aid kit
  • SMIDGE
  • All the bike tools
  • Spare tubes JIC
  • Riding snacks
  • Spare Polaris straps
  • Battery pack and cable
  • Toiletries (Lush soap bars for the win)
  • Money
  • Oh and UNDERWEAR
  • All of this I squeezed into the seat post bag and my frame bag. As I mentioned before, Cotic have a new frame bag, and it’s flippin’ good. Due to it being waterproof, spacious and easily accessible I put all my electrical items, some snacks and my waterproof in this bag.

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    Now that took a lot of effort to figure out with plenty of unpacking and packing, juggling and umming and ahhing about what I ACTUALLY needed to take, like hair curlers- there just wasn’t the space.

    All packed up I headed out for a nice drive up to Fort Augustus to meet the other riders, Fiola, George and Joe. Once we all arrived we sat and looked at the tour that was planned on Komoot and got a good nights kip before our adventure began.

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    We woke up to classic Scottish weather, rain. Had breakfast, grabbed our bikes, admired the Fort Augustus canal locks and then we were off! GRAVEL RIDING? what exactly is that then? I certainly felt like I had the right bike for the job, but after a good million miles of canal path and road I can’t remember meeting the gravel.

    Scottish highlands are unpredictable and super harsh at times, so the first days riding took us all along some amazing lakes and then up a few incredible mountains.

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    Mountain paths that were unrideable and nearly unwalkable at times, lugging my bike up them with bags in tow was a struggle to say the least, but the sweet feeling of success when I reached the summit made the pain train super worth it!

    On the descents the bags all remained very much attached to my bike as I hung on for dear life on the drops riding down the rockiest ‘gravel paths’ I’d ever seen!

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    After a good 80k we arrived in a beautiful hamlet called Arnisdale, all pretty tired and hungry we set up camp for the night.

    This was my favourite bit of the trip. I’d packed THE best food and was cosy and content in my dry clothes. Tent up and fire lit we sat and enjoyed the sunset over the Isle of Skye before rolling into our tents for some much needed rest.

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    The best nights sleep followed by a lovely coffee and bowl of porridge on the beach to set me up for the day, which luckily was a dry one!

    We made our way out of Arnisdale and stopped in a village called Glenelg to grab some more snacks, fill up our water bottles and look at the days route.

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    Sometimes it doesn’t matter how much you plan for a trip, some things just don’t work out! After the mega first day riding, we came to the realisation that we were going to be struggling for time to get back to Fort Augustus on these ‘gravel paths’. Fortuntely Komoot makes it super easy to re-route a trip, so that’s what we did. This meant however A LOT of road to cover.

    Kelly Scotland Bikepacking

    I don’t have much to say about this part of the trip…but what I will say is, forget the views and ‘training’ I am not a road rider and I never will be. Singing ‘Walking In Memphis’ and ‘Fall At Your Feet’ at the back of the pack was keeping me going and then some ‘Tubthumping (I get knocked down)’ ft Fiola was also a distraction from the dismay. (I only cried once). During our Scottish A-roads tour we stopped off at a nice pub, the Cluanie Inn where we enjoyed a coffee and some cake and then removing over 20+ ticks from mine and Fiola’s bodies. Already struggling on the roads the last thing I needed was some new pals trying to hitch a ride.

    AHEM, after an interesting I don’t know…80k? We finally made it to some GRAVEL ROADS, so the last 12k of our ride was pretty nice, up and through some forests with lovely views down the valley.

    We arrived back in Fort Augustus and treated ourselves to a bag of chips and a cold beverage on the edge of the locks. Although not the one we had planned, what a trip, I’m going to be busy plotting my highlights on Komoot for a while! And may I add, zero flats and zero mechanicals aboard the Escapade, what a bike. Due to the ticks I spent the last night in my car, luckily it’s an estate.

    Kelly Bikepacking in Scotland

    Read Kelly's Blog here…

    Kelly's Instagram…


    24/04/2018 - Tricky Moore on the top spot

    SHARE : F t url

    Tricky Moore

    Hardtail hooligan Tricky Moore has got his brand new BFe frame built up and raced it at the MIJ Downhill Round 1 race at the weekend and got the top spot on the podium in the hardtail category. Well done Tricky!

    Tricky Moore
    Tricky Moore's BFe

    MIJ Racing …

    Roots & Rain Results & Photos…


    06/04/2018 - Ambassadors

    SHARE : F t url

    Kelly Jayne aboard her Rocket

    Ambassador Kelly Jayne has barely been off her Rocket over winter, no weather fazes her or her little trail dog Bell. She regularly shares her adventures on her blog (link below) and on her Instagram page.

    When the drainage on the trails is holding out really well!#coticbikes #unsustainablyhighstoke #gritandsteel #rideeverything #morvelotestteam #mudhugger #canecreek #HELMyeah #wildernesstrailbikes #ridewtb #burgtec #flatpedalthunder #biketrack #wildtrail #kingud #keepitclean #peatysproducts #julboathlete #fuelledbywildtrail @coticbikes @julbo_eyewear @morvelo @wildernesstrailbikes @mudhugger2 @themudhugger @burgtec @canecreekusa

    A post shared by Kell, Bell and bikes. (@kelljmae_) on

    Dave Camus has been busy with Ride Sheffield recently, digging and keeping the local trails running sweet. He's also been busy winning Sheffield dual racing! #dualrules and raced the ND(H)uro Round 2 at Kielder Forest, finishing in 2nd place. You can follow what he's up to over on his Instagram page.

    Tough day on the hill but stage 1 was a banger, @coticbikes loving it, cheers @lewisgregoryphoto for the snap 🤘

    A post shared by Dave Camus (@davecamus) on

    Ben Gerrish's Flare Max

    I think it's fair to say Ben Gerrish is LOVING his new FlareMAX. It's been settling in nicely to its new home in the Lakes. Ben has films and races planned in the coming months. You can follow him over on his Instagram.

    Standard mountain behaviour. #Excitable 📸 @dan_lead • • #CoticBikes #GotFlare #RADMin #MadisonClothing #HopeTech #WTB #FabricCycles #AdidasTerrex #WildTrail #HDDN #LakesMTB #CaneCreek #SAXX #FreeToMove #HKTMovement #RideJoystick #TrailDog #WildfireDistro

    A post shared by Ben Gerrish (@bengerrish_) on


    Kelly's blog…

    Kelly's Instagram…

    Camus's Instagram…

    Ben's Instagram…


    01/12/2017 - Adele's 1 Year

    SHARE : F t url

    Adele

    One year as Cotic Brand Ambassador

    Adele Mitchell's Flare

    Adele reflects on 1 year as Cotic brand ambassador...

    This time last year I was invited to Cotic HQ in the Peak District to discuss becoming a brand ambassador and having my own Cotic Flare – a 650b trail bike with 130mm travel – to ride for a year.

    It was an easy sell, tbh. Cotic are a small, British mountain bike brand who specialise in steel frames. They fight their corner in the world of big mtb brands with a range of bikes that could sit at the top end of any line up, and describe the Flare as ‘a brilliant all round trail bike, with a fleet footed feel, synapse quick handling, crisp climbing, fun descending.’ What’s more, I grew up near The Peaks, I love mtb – and they gave me a very fine lunch that included deep fried onion rings. Not that I was a complete walk over, though. After all, I already owned a not- too-shabby trail bike and I wasn’t going to give it up for a year if what was on offer wasn’t going to be a) as good if not better and b)add a new dimension to my riding. Happily the Flare has risen to the challenge with ease.

    IMG_5900

    The Flare arrived at Adele Towers, Surrey, in early February, neatly squeezed into the back of Cotic’s new van for is journey down the M1. The steel frame is crafted in Reynolds 853, which is exceptionally stiff, robust and durable and can thus be used in thinner dimensions for lightness (hence the bike’s ‘skinny’ appearance). Steel is also used for the seatstays, allowing generous ankle, heel and calf clearance. The droplink suspension layout has titanium pivot fittings, while the swingarm is aluminium to allow the machined parts to fit while enabling stiffness at the back of the bike. And finally, my bike is customised with Joystick carbon bars, WTB 27.5″ carbon wheels and tubeless tyres, a 130mm X-Fusion fork, some gorgeous Hopetech bling and Burgtec pedals that have kept my feet firmly in place whatever the terrain. For the record (and those who think steel bikes are always going to be heavy) I can pick the Flare up with one hand. Also, on hills, I can overtake my friends who ride carbon 29ers (#smug).

    IMG_5940

    Unfortunately and despite being New Bike Day, the trails of The Surrey Hills had never looked more dismal and uninspiring: a fest of sucky mud, wet roots, low cloud and non-existent views. We rode to take a few photos, snacked on sandwiches and coffee, and talked of better weather and future ride plans before waving the team off back up to The Peaks where, if my childhood memories serve me right, the sun never stops shining.

    Adele Mitchell

    Thankfully on the day of my first event with the Flare – Battle on the Beach in Pembrey, South Wales – the sun was out in full force. BotB is a unique three-lap, 45km race that includes a 15km beach sprint, 15km singletrack through the dunes and 15km of fire road slog into a headwind. It’s a wonderful ride in a beautiful setting, and a great way to test the Flare – and my fitness out. Thankfully we both passed the test!

    Our annual girls’ trip to Afan rolled around next: this year four of us rocked up at the Afan Lodge where we enjoyed hearty breakfasts, long rides and big dinners, and inadvertently intimidated the groups of male riders who weren’t expecting to be sharing the bar with a bunch of #radmums on a weekend away. We had a long day in the saddle after Afan Lodge’s local trail legend sent us up the mountain on the ‘scenic route’ – which I interpreted to mean ‘easier’ than the normal slog up hill, but which turned out to be just as steep but twice as long. Nice views though, he wasn’t wrong there.

    Cotic Flare

    On the way down The Flare galloped around the trails like a nippy Jack Russell – kept in check by super grippy WTB tyres which resolutely held on while everyone else was commenting on how sketchy the trails were feeling.

    Back home in Surrey and Fox held a launch event for its Proframe helmet at the Swinley Forest trail centre. It’s a great piece of kit and testing it out proved to be a brilliant opportunity to ride flat out on familiar trails.

    It also turned out to be an opportunity to meet Fox ambassador and Redbull Rampage rider Pierre Edouard Ferry. He was intrigued to hear all about the Cotic, and was more than happy to chat. Also, he is very handsome. So all in all, a great day out!

    Adele Mitchell Clothing

    The Flare is fleet footed, fast and fun and it has given me a lot of confidence on technical terrain – but there is always room for improvement, and with a trip to the Alps on the horizon I headed off for some mountain biking tuition. It’s actually really tricky to over-ride the deep-seated procedural memory that comes from years of riding experience – and so I struggled at first to adapt new technique. However I’m a determined sort so I retired to the woods for many solo rides, sessioning my back-to-basics new skills: looking ahead, using my heel position effectively and sticking my elbows and knees out more (not a technical term). Small things, big difference on the trails though.

    Anyway, how about throwing yourself in at the deep end with a bit of Alpine mountain biking fun? A mix of family holiday with flooded valley rides, accidentally riding black runs (punched the air at the end of that one!) and delicious – and very strong – beer at the end of a stunning cross-country ride: we had an amazing week in and around Les Gets.

    Cotic Flare

    We visit Dartmoor to ride each year. We have friends who live in the heart of the National Park and we can ride from their door, and return later in the day to eat unfeasibly large amounts of local cheese. Not surprisingly, it’s one of the highlights of the year. The Dartmoor National Park is beyond beautiful and appears untouched and wild – in fact, and in order to keep it unspoilt, it is tightly managed. That means trails are limited but well maintained, and a lot of fun if you like riding over rock-strewn moorlands and hopping over aristan-crafted stone drainage ditches. Its old-school cross-country riding with big hills so leave your long travel bike at home and be prepared to get a little bit lost.

    Cotic Flare, Adele Mitchell

    Another favourite day out is the circular ride from Poole via Corfe Castle. It’s true Famous Five adventure stuff (though there were sixteen of us in total), with a trip on a ferry, cream teas, huge climbs and legs-out descents along the cliff tops and down to the sea. In a slight detour from the normal route, some mentioned that the swanky hotel The Pig On The Beach was en-route and so we popped in to ‘just to have a look’: several rounds of drinks and outdoor-cooked, flatbread pizzas later, we made our way back to the ferry, (over) tired and happy.

    As you will have realised by now, I’m happiest on long rides with big hills and fun descents, so when I decided to enter Swinley Enduro – the first one I’ve ridden – I did so for the fun and the experience, rather than to get placed. It was one of the friendliest events I’ve ever ridden: the 30 women taking part agreed we’d prefer to start together rather than in age categories, and we moved round the route laughing, chatting, sharing tips and supporting each other. It was a really special atmosphere and (almost!) helped settle my nerves! I also spotted a couple of Cotic riders in the mix too – always good to say hello.

    Swinley Enduro

    Mostly though, I am enjoying the Flare on the local hills and in the woods. Apologies for the lack of images of me riding there: often there is simply no one on hand to take a picture – perhaps Cotic could add a selfie-button to the 2018 model?

    Adele Mitchell

    If you'd like a Flare like Adele's follow the link below!


    Order your Flare here…

    Read more about the Flare on the product page…

    Read Adele's blog…


    06/11/2017 - Kelly's trip with BMW Mountains

    SHARE : F t url

    Kelly Jayne

    BMW, Mountains and a rocket

    New brand ambassador Kelly-Jayne was lucky enough to win an incredible prize with BMW Mountains... She tells us all about it in her blog post.

    So, for the first time ever, I entered a competition. After scanning Instagram on the way home from our roadtrip in the Alps and seeing that Hannah Barnes had ridden Nauders (mine and Aiken’s favourite place we visited) for a BMW Mountains Mission, I stumbled upon a competition where you had to complete your own ‘mission’. The prizes on offer included a Garmin, an Evoc bag and just this all expenses paid road trip for you and a +1 with Hannah Barnes and Martin Söderström… I thought, well, I highly doubt I’d ever win the road trip but I could do with a Garmin, and Evoc bags are pretty sweet. My mission was to ride 20k with 1000m of climbing. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. I took on my mission, took a selfie as proof with a screenshot of my ride on strava and sent it across to BMW Mounatins. And that was that! I’ll be honest, after that I completely forgot about it and got on with my life. I received an email Monday 11th September from BMW Mountains informing me that the competition entry was closed and the winner of the prizes and road trip would be announced ‘TODAY’. I didn’t hear anything after this and assumed I hadn’t won (better ask Aiken for a Garmin for Christmas). The following day, I was sitting having a brew with my grandparents and I got some pretty ridiculous news.

    "CONGRATULATIONS - YOU ARE THE GRAND PRIZE WINNER"

    HOLY MOLY. I’ll be honest, to my grandparents dislike, I swore quite a lot and was very(x10000) shocked that I’d won! The road trip would start on the 18th September, in 7 days… (serious?).

    Aiken and I were in complete disbelief and were sure that it was a scam, and didn’t believe it until we got our flight times on the Sunday night!

    MONDAYS R 4 ROCKETS

    Kelly Jayne BMW Mountains blog post

    As if it couldn’t get more exciting, the day before our road trip, Bell (FYI my beautiful dog) and I met Richard Baybutt, ‘photographer, mechanic, daft ideas person’ from Cotic and his dog Otto at the Hemlock Trail Association for a ride and chat about all things bikes. After drooling over Cotic Bikes for a while I took myself on a Cotic demo day back in June at Lady Cannings and tried out all the bikes and settled on the Rocket as my favourite. So as an already massive fan of the Rocket I was super stoked to be out riding on one again. Amazingly, I was offered the role as a Cotic Ambassador and was given a Rocket for my trip (could things get any better?!).

    So absolutely buzzing, we flew into Munich. Collected at the airport by Moritz, a super friendly intern from BMW Mountains who dropped us off at Arthotel Ana. That evening we took it easy after the days travelling, had some pizza and a rest before our 6 day road trip began. Day 1 We met a very friendly Hannah and Martin in the hotel lobby, and headed over to BMW Welt where we met Tuuli- our go-to-gal (for all things road trip related), photographer Jan Kasl and the film crew (FullFace Productions), who would be following (stalking) us on our road trip. After a Tour of all the fancy cars and some history of BMW, a very fancy lunch, I was then, (to my surprise) handed over the keys to a VERY fancy new pre-production BMW X3 for our road trip.

    Kelly Jayne BMW Mountains blog pos

    After an awkward bit of filming where I had to talk to the camera for the first time, (if anyone else has experienced this before, my god it’s hard work!!) we all packed up, and headed off to our first stop- Hotel Staudacherhof in Garmisch-Partenkirchen. A trip to the spa followed by a tasty 6 course Oktoberfest meal, and we were ready for some sleep!

    Day 2 E-Bikes (what’s this all about then?)

    Having never ridden an E-bike before, I was quite looking forward to giving the BMW Specialized E-bike a go (even though I had a very exciting Rocket waiting for me). We met our very friendly guide Alex, picked up our bikes and headed off up to the Eibsee!

    Kelly Jayne BMW Mountains trip

    he ride wasn’t quite how I remembered it… Although the beautiful scenery was familiar the climb was quite different- delightful, sociable and required zero effort. Also, I must not forget to mention, it went A LOT faster. Before we knew it we were greeted with an awesome rocky descent after a fantastic feed at the Hochthörlehütte.

    Now not only were these E-bikes, they were ‘fatty’ E-bikes. Made for an interesting descent!

    After the ride we headed to the hotel Spa for a quick dip and back on the road to our next destination in the swanky X3; Hotel Die Berge, Solden.

    Day 3- What a place!

    We met with our new guide for the day- Lienke (a very nice and impressively fast guide from Bike School RIDE-ON). Finally time to get the Rocket out! Some mega faffing and bike building before we all headed up the chairlift to Sölden Bikepark (a.k.a Bike Republic Sölden).

    Such an incredible place. The views were spectacular and trails even more so. Super flowy fast fun desents, immaculately groomed and maintained, and so well crafted all made even more fun on the Rocket! Sölden is on our list of places to go back to next year for sure!

    Kelly Jayne BMW Mountains blog post

    Day 4- No bikes today, instead we went on a ‘driving experience’ over the Timmelsjoch and Julier passes. As far as driving experiences go… it was pretty cool!

    After what felt like a million hours of driving we made it to St.Moritz and to the very fancy Hotel Hauser. (If you wanted, you could have a pillow case stuffed solely with pine shavings for reasons I just don’t know). We had yet another spectacular meal at their restaurant and met our super cool guide for tomorrow’s ride, Dave Spielmann from Allaboutmtb.

    Day 5- St.Moritz (you beauty). It was FREEZING. But the views were spectacular.

    Kelly Jayne BMW Mountains blog pos

    Aiken and I had ridden here in the summer and absolutely loved the flowtrails- like Solden, super well maintained and not surprisingly, built by the same team!

    At the top of the Corviglia there are two flowtrails, Corviglia and Olympia flowtrails – both super fun. One takes you back to the funicular and the other you can take down to another trail Foppettas, this is a short but super sweet and definitely in my list of top 10 favourite trails I’ve ridden. Marmot spotting, an awesome guide (thanks Dave), what feels like endless rollercoaster flowtrail fun and the best lunch spot at Alto Bar. Oh we did have ever such a fun day!

    That evening we went up a funicular to Muottas Muragl for our dinner with the whole gang. We were met with the most stunning views to finish off such an incredible trip!

    Kelly Jayne BMW Mountains blog pos

    Day 6- Home time!

    Aiken and I said our goodbyes to Hannah and Martin and the Fullface production crew and then headed back to Munich with Tuuli. What a week ay! For a first time enter of a competition, I think I got mega lucky. Such a sweet week spent riding, hanging out with and meeting some great people. Massive thank you to BMW mountains for the trip and a bigger one to Tuuli for making it spectacular. And thanks to Jan Kasl for the incredible photos.


    Kelly Jayne's blog…

    Buy your adventure Rocket…


    19/09/2017 - Adele Mitchell Enduro

    SHARE : F t url

    Adele Mitchell

    Swinley Enduro

    Swinley Enduro

    Adele Mitchell braved her first mountain bike enduro last weekend. A 25km loop with 8 timed stages. It's a lot to take on! In her new blog post she explains the 10 things she learnt from this experience. It's well worth a read, as it's very true!

    She bumped into our Development Squad rider Will Easey while she was there. Will absolutely smashed it and came 3rd in his category. Well done Will!

    Nothing better than coming into a stage listening to this racket!!😂😂 Although people may complain about swinley, it still has its hidden gems with some pretty fun stages! #mtb #rideordie #cotic @dd_cycles @coticbikes @swinleybikehub @hktproducts @truemtb @riderschannel #swinleybikehub #steel #steelisreal #oioi #endurogame #soenduro #callmecurtiskeene #braap

    A post shared by Will Easey (@will.easey) on


    Adele Mitchell's blog …

    All Team news …

    All Ambassador news …


    30/08/2017 - Adele Mitchell in the Alps

    SHARE : F t url

    Adele Mitchell escapes to the Alps

    Cotic Flare

    "The irony that a mountain bike riding holiday usually starts by putting your bike into a car isn’t lost on me, but with more and more far flung destinations offering tantalising riding, sometimes these things just have to be done. And so it was – several times this summer – that we shoehorned the family, our luggage, followed by even more mtb luggage, into our ‘its too small, isn’t it?’ car, strapped the bikes onto the roof and set off on holiday.

    First off, we managed to convince our teenage family that a holiday in The Alps was just what they needed despite the fact there isn’t a beach. And it might rain. And they don’t like mountain biking. And they’d need to travel for ten hours with a couple of bike wheels nudging the back of their heads. As not everyone wanted to ride, we divided our time between walking in the mountains, eating, swimming in the local lake, eating, shopping at the market, eating, sneaking out for an occasional mountain bike ride while they were otherwise occupied, and then more eating. Turns out The Alps can tick almost every single holiday box with aplomb (and no one mentioned the lack of beach, so we’ll let that one go). Everyone wants to go back next year.


    The Cotic Flare…

    See Adele's blog post …

    See All Ambassador news …


    21/07/2017 - Adele's Mountain Bike Skills

    SHARE : F t url

    Adele Mitchell

    On Mountain Bike Skills

    "I’m an enthusiastic rider, rather than a great one but like to think I have managed to build some skills in that time (I’m still in one piece, for a start). Of course I also know that, like most of us, I have gaping holes in my skills set. I’ve written about some of them here – and as a result Si from Pedal & Spoke MTB Coaching – a man who has the patience of a saint, btw – kindly offered me a skills session to help iron out a few of my habitual creases. My last skills session was over three years ago so it was long overdue: its good to keep learning and also bad habits take hold easily and can be hard to shake off (as I was about to find out!)."

    Read more of her blog post using the link below...


    Read Adele's Blog here…


    10/07/2017 - Ben Gerrish Trans Julius Enduro

    SHARE : F t url

    Ben Gerrish

    Trans Julius 2017

    "A few months ago I was sent an email asking if I would like to go and race the first ever Trans Julius Enduro, in Slovenia by Anna from Bikesoup magazine. The trip format was, a few days either side of the event to document the Slovenian scene surrounding the race and to a point the country in general. The event itself is a four day stage race, in the truly magnificent Julian Alps.

    14 MITJA SODJA

    Slovenia has been on my list of places to visit for some time now, so it’s safe to say the stoke was high, and building, for this one.

    No sleep, an abandoned van and a few forgotten items, saw me arriving in Slovenia, early Tuesday morning with my passport, bike camera and a few euros. What could possibly go wrong?

    12 GREGOR SKOBERNE

    Our hosts, the organisers of the race were amazing from the off and coffee, beer, food and perfect tour guiding was the initial order of the day. Their English not only put my complete lack of Slovene, but also my questionable northern dialect, to shame.

    A couple of days, guided by the ever enthusiastic locals got us champing at the bit for the race. Dry dusty trails, within some of the most breathtaking mountain scenery I have ever come across can’t really fail to stir the stoke. I had seen the mountains from the plane window on the way into the Ljubljana runway, and even from that overhead perspective, had struggled to grasp the scale and vastness of them. Now we were on the trails, it was even more exciting.

    3

    For a first Trans race by the team and coming in at sub €200 for a four day event, the organisation, food provided and entertainment was top drawer. Seeding was run on Thursday, with a night stage ending in on the town steps and into the square. Novel, fun and rowdy, if I had to choose three words to describe that one. Placing 6th, after a decidedly dicey crash on the cobbles near the end, I headed into the main event feeling positive.

    The subsequent days were a whirlwind of high alpine passes, insane mountain views, gruelling climbs, amazing singletrack and some 90’s throwback, off the brakes, flat out fire road and old WW1 artillery tracks built by the Italians high in the mountains. Bike riding and history lessons, maybe if I'd paid more attention at GCSE if we toured the historical sites by bike?!

    4 GREGOR SKOBERNE

    The final stage, saw us perched a top one of the highest accessible points from the Vogel ski resort, staring down a seriously fun looking scree slope, awaiting the mass start. Minutes before the klaxon should have been sounding the start of our final descent of the race the sky turned an ominous black and a crack of thunder forced the start line a little farther down the hill. A little gutted to not get the chance to race the screes, but what unfolded was more than enough to be, undoubtedly, a lifelong memory.

    2 MITJA SODJA

    As we dropped into the initial bike park section the storm had already caught up with us, and the rain was heavy! Out of the bike park onto the lower slopes of the hill and the visibility was down to about 10 metres, and the rain was sideways, rounding one corner I was physically knocked off my bike by the wind. Thunder was growling through the valley and even though it was only midday it felt like dusk, only lit up by the occasional flash of lightning. This was epic, I pulled into the finish, pretty unaware of position, time or whether or not I’d just ridden or swam down the last 20 minutes of track.

    In the end it turned out I’d pulled myself into 3rd position on the last stage, but a big enough margin to go 3rd overall. So I got to stand on a log, won an amazing recycled tyre trophy made just down the road, an entry for next year, beer and most importantly received a novelty sized cheque, so thats a life goal complete.

    Slovenia rocks! I’ll definitely be back!"

    13 GREGOR SKOBERNE
    1 GREGOR SKOBERNE

    Follow Ben Gerrish on Twitter…

    Order your Enduro bike here…


    12/06/2017 - Adele Mitchell blog post

    SHARE : F t url

    Adele Mitchell

    Fear and mountain biking

    A Line Demo Day

    Our brand ambassador Adele Mitchell has recently written a fantastic blog post about fear and mountain biking. Her post is inspired by Megan Hine's new book, Mind Of A Survivor. In her book she explains how the instinct and skills needed for survival can be applied to ordinary lives.

    Adele Mitchell- "Ultimately when we ride we are all chasing ‘the flow’ fix – those moments when your mind and body connect and riding becomes instinctive and effortless “it’s the most beautiful, almost spiritual feeling: a kind of physical enlightenment’ says Hine. But this means pushing ourselves to our limit, and when fear takes over (which it does for me fairly often!), we freeze, don’t think clearly, and are then in more danger. Reassuringly Hine explains that fear is an evolutionary response to a perceived danger and there is nothing impressive about not being scared because that means you don’t know you may be in trouble. Fear is your body’s way of saying something is wrong. To move forward, it's important to control your fear – perhaps using visualisation (I have found this very effective, though it takes practice!), or by pinpointing the cause, accepting it and putting it ‘into a box’."

    Cy - Although written from her perspective and based on her experiences, it's a universal theme and one which I (and I'm sure all of us) still battle with, and it's very definitely not just women who have to deal with it. That said, in a male dominated sport it does seem that women do feel more easily intimidated in group ride situations, which I think is a huge shame.

    Sam told me how positively the Cafe Adventure Women's Demo had gone the other week, with feedback being that the people who attended felt much less pressure about 'slowing everyone down' and other such things. I guess we all have this to some extent - the playground concerns about fitting in. I know I was put off riding with a group of guys I met not long after moving to Sheffield because they were soooooooooooo much faster than me. They never complained about waiting, and never took the piss, it was all in my head. It's not nice being the one at the back though. All sorts of ego issues wrapped up in it. I ride with them regularly now, and can largely keep up these days (just about), but it took some swallowing of pride and some effort on my part to improve a little to make me comfortable in my own skin with them. Like I say, nothing to do with them or their behaviour (apart from being annoyingly fast and strong on bikes), all in my head...

    I hope by discussing it we make you think, and realise, feeling these pressures is OK, and completely normal. We're all here to have fun. As she says, we really don't talk about fear enough.

    Read more of Adele's blog post discussing fear here


    Read the full blog post here…