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!
Wise Words this week comes to you from none other than Patrick Morewood.
You’ll likely know the name Patrick Morewood from his Makulu downhill bike and the brand that bore his name. He’s now fronting a new brand named Pyga, designed and built on his home turf of South Africa. He’s also pretty handy on a bike, having represented his country at the downhill World Championships in the early 90s.
How would your closest riding buddies describe you to someone who has never met you?
Sometimes serious, a bit sarcastic. I enjoy a good times with like-minded people. Precise,
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?
I didn’t buy him, but my son Cam is 13 years old now and has given me a new lease on riding, I am pushing myself harder than ever trying to
Do what he does and stay with him. I’d say that he’s had the biggest effect on my life as a rider.
What unusual habits do you have as a bike rider?
Not really unusual but I have to ride with a “buff” type thing in my head otherwise I can’t see. I’m bald and the sweat just runs straight into my eyes.
What piece of advice do you think every mountain bike rider should hear? And what piece should they ignore?
Bullshit baffles brains. Don’t believe every piece of technical marketing jargon you read or hear.
Test ride before you buy.
Trust your feelings.
Don’t believe all the mumbo jumbo that gets pushed your way and don’t think that you need the most expensive latest model to be able to have fun and ride well, good suspension and brakes should always come first.
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?
It’s hard to replicate that first ride in a new prototype bike. It doesn’t matter where it is but that combination of creating something new and being able to ride it for the first time is incredible.
I enjoy riding remote trails for the first time such a Waterval Boven in Mpumalanga South Africa as well as any of our PYGA Trail Daze events where it’s all about good food good riding and good people.
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?
Nothing. Everything I’ve done, good or bad leads onto something else that usually ends up with a positive result.
How do you motivate yourself when you’re struggling or lacking inspiration?
I like to be alone in the evening, I’ll have a few drinks and some good music and get a good shuttle session in the next day. Time is always a good solution for inspiration or creativity, it can’t be forced and I find that it comes when it’s needed.
What single and specific thing about riding bicycles do you gain the most happiness from?
That feeling of youth, invincibility and freedom. I always say to my riding mates or family, “today was a 25” what I mean by this is that although I’m 48 on that day or run or doing a jump line, I honestly felt like I was 25 years old. To me that was when I was feeling my best in terms of riding.
What single thing would you like to erase from cycling history from the last year?
I’m not one to want to erase the past. I believe that everything happens for good reason and that we can’t progress without a past.
What single thing would you like to make happen in the cycling world in the next year?
I would like to see Aluminium continue to make a comeback. It’s such an underestimated material that has so much more to give, I’d like to see more development in alloys as I’m sure there are still un-tapped properties in aluminium alloys just waiting to be used in bikes.
Who else should we ask these questions?
Mike Van Zyl, works at SRAM. Greg Minnaar’s old mechanic.