Wise Words is our new interview series talking to some of mountain biking’s most switched on people.
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!
Victor Lucas is handling the wisdom in this week’s Wise Words.
If you leafed through Dirt Magazine back in the day, then it’s highly likely that the cover shot and a fair chunk of the photos inside were the work of Victor Lucas. One of the OG’s of World Cup photography. Since then, he’s produced most of Chris Akrigg’s edits, joined the Misspent Summers crew and heads us Alltimebikes.com. Fingers in all the pies.
How would your closest riding buddies describe you to someone who has never met you?
Just a guy who likes bikes and seems to be able to survive taking photos and making videos.
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 €10 hammock. The most comfortable way to sleep outdoors on bike packing trips.
What unusual habits do you have as a bike rider?
I’m not really interested in riding bike parks. I used to enjoy it, but now I get bored riding the same trails and getting blown into the weeds by all the fast kids.
What piece of advice do you think every mountain bike rider should hear? And what piece should they ignore?
It’s nice to have a bling bike, but I think a lot of people have forgotten that what is great about the bicycle as one of the world’s greatest inventions, is it’s simplicity. You can have fun on any bike, even if it’s pretty basic.
I don’t mean we should all be riding 15 year old hardtails, just that a lot of bikes are way more complicated than they need to be. Less faff, more flow. That’s what I want.
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?
Bike safari in Botswana with a good crew after the World Cup in South Africa. I wish I had been a bit fitter, had fewer punctures, was less scared of the animals and that we had spent a few more days there.
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?
Standing in line in airports. Road trips are way better. Ironically, I’m writing this in an aeroplane.
How do you motivate yourself when you’re struggling or lacking inspiration?
I remind myself that it always feels good to be outside riding a bike. Even if it’s too hot, too cold, too wet, I always feel better after a bike ride. It makes me more enthusiastic about life in general and hopefully my photos and videos will inspire others to ride too.
What single and specific thing about riding bicycles do you gain the most happiness from?
Adventure. Exploring and finding new trails and seeing new places.
What single thing would you like to erase from cycling history from the last year?
Doping scandals. Not to cover them up, but I wish people never resorted to it in the first place.
What single thing would you like to make happen in the cycling world in the next year?
More kids on bikes. And more tolerance for shared use of hiking and biking trails. Which goes both ways. As bikers we need to not scare the crap out of other folk who don’t understand our sport. And I hope other users understand that the mountains can be shared in a sustainable way.
Yeah that’s 2 things. I could give you ten more easily.
Who else should we ask these questions to?
Maybe Martyn Ashton. Mike Rose. Nick Larsen. Hans Rey. Alan Muldoon. Steve Jones…