Wise Words is our new interview series talking to some of mountain biking’s most switched on people.
Wise Words is where we’ll ask our short list of questions to a heap of influential, inspiring and outspoken people that we feel are driving the direction of mountain biking today. Some will make you think, some will make you laugh, some will be plain dumb, some will inspire you to better yourself and your riding. We hope!
Photos by Duncan Philpott.
This week’s Wise Words comes to you from the man behind the Hookit Products, Mr Oliver Green.
According to Mr. Nick Hamilton, Oli Green is a “piss-taking poet and a frustrated artist, who deals in shiny bike bits and lumps of earth.” For those who don’t know Oliver Green, he is the man behind running Hookit Products, the UK distributors of Unite Components, All Mountain Style [AMS], Ninjaz, 35Bikes, SAXX, plus a few more.
How would your closest riding buddies describe you to someone who has never met you?
A danger to himself and others, but enthusiastic.
What thing or things have you bought in the last year that had the biggest effect on your life as a mountain biker / cyclist / person that works in the bike industry?
A chain guide for my mountain bike, after years without one just running a narrow/wide chainring and clutch it’s nice to never drop a chain again.
What unusual habits do you have as a bike rider?
Still riding 24” wheels on my jump bike, we are a dying breed, it’s definitely still the right thing to do though.
What piece of advice do you think every mountain bike rider should hear? And what piece should they ignore?
Less is more, pumping and railing turns is more fun and more effective than sprinting and slamming your brakes on all the time.
As for what they should ignore, gear snobs, don’t let people tell you that your bike is not up to the job, there are a lot of people out there with the best bikes going and can’t ride a bike for toffee. Oh and if anyone tries to tell you that you don’t have time for a pint after a ride, ignore them too, you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.
If you could go back and re-ride one day from your life so far, where/what/when/who would it be? Would you change anything?
Finally getting through the main line at Jimmy’s Spot (Leatherhead), one jump there has been my nemesis for a couple of years now, but the locals applied full peer pressure and getting to the end of that line after such a battle left me grinning from ear-to-ear for a long time. Turns out, as usual that it wasn’t anywhere near as hard I had built it up to be. Cheers Jimmy, MOD, and Ali for all the abuse.
What have you wasted the most time on in your life as a rider or bike industry career that you wished you’d given up years ago?
To be honest, nothing. There isn’t much I do in the industry or on the bike that I think’s a waste of time.
How do you motivate yourself when you’re struggling or lacking inspiration?
A good bike edit hypes me up, luckily we have the Steel City Media power house down the road so he always lets me know what’s what. To be honest if it has Danny Mac, Akrigg, or Semenuk in it you know you are in for a treat, or even better a great trails segment like in Deathgrip.
What single and specific thing about riding bicycles do you gain the most happiness from?
Riding new spots, trying new stuff and the feeling you get at the end of the day when you put your bike away and you know you gave it your all and you still have all of your limbs intact, and its time to go to the pub.
What single thing would you like to erase from cycling history from the last year?
Not sure if its been in the last year but fat bikes.
What single thing would you like to make happen in the cycling world in the next year?
Local government and land owners to chill out about access and trail building. Let people get creative, enjoy the outdoor spaces, as long as its all done sensibly, and not leaving a mess, go for it.
Who else should we ask these questions to?
Craig Evans, probably one of the most varied riders out there, somehow still flying under the radar a bit even though he’s ridden Fest, competed at World Cups, won Hardline, and is a pinner on a BMX.