How long have you been riding off-road
My entry to riding off road is slightly different to most...
If you ignore the riding around fields as a young boy (as that's what was out the back of our housing estate) then my offroading actually began with horses, I learnt to ride when I was about 10-11 and as part of our lessons we would regularly go for hacks around the local bridleways and farm tracks and it was always my favourite part, some of my friends were more into dressage and show but for me it was the hacks out in the countryside that brought me most happiness.
Sadly after a few years the lady who owned the stables and riding school sold almost all of her land to a local housing developer and the school shut, and it was a that point I started going on out on the same hacks on my bike (a crappy 5 speed path/MTB type bike), which promptly died and early death at the hands of the local terrain.
I ended up getting my first actual MTB (A Raleigh) in about 1994 and used that for a couple of years for messing about, local XC rides, and commuting to school until that too finally died and I managed to persuade my parents to combine presents and my savings into a brand new shiny Trek 6000 of 1997 vintage, which in my eyes was the best bike ever and surely would never need upgrading in any way whatsoever as it was absolutely 100% perfect!
At this point I got involved with a local shop and started MTBing properly with other people, ended up with a Saturday job at the shop (and in later years running the workshop there) and also started entering local XC races. My 'perfect' Trek had a hard life and went through many upgrades, and ultimately got replaced when I joined the shop team and was (practically) given a new '99 Scott Comp Racing in late 98 as part of the sponsorship deal.
I was also getting into trials at this point so my riding was split between trials and XC and had a string of converted MTB's for trial followed by dedicated trials bikes as well as the XC bike. The Scott was eventually passed on to my girlfriends brother when I went to Uni in 2000 by which point I'd also acquired a couple of other bikes.
While I was at Uni my XC racing waned a bit as I focused on trials and a bit of DH and riding for fun, went through quite a few bikes in the fews years as a result of breakages and changing technology. Entered my first 24 hr race in 2001 and have been racing 12 and 24hr events ever since. I did was still occasionally racing XCO, and even did one of the Single Speed UK championships, but only started to race XC again regularly in about 2007.
In latter years have raced a few Enduros but XCO and 12/24 are still what I find most fun, have done 12 and 24 events Solo a few times as well as in teams, but but spent a lot of time on big days out on Dartmoor, Exmoor, Quantocks, and in Wales. Have taken a year out of XC racing this year (apart from Pivot 24/12) due to arrival of a little one, but hoping to go back next year.
Oh and I often end up ‘off-road’ on my tourer and commuter, but that’s just paths and tracks and occasional bit of Dartmoor bridleways rather than properly off-road.
and what have you been doing it on?
The full list is rather long!
Raleigh Max - retired
Trek 6000 - sold
Scott Comp Racing - sold
Cannondale Beast of the East - sold
Coyote XC2 - sold
Kona Cinder Cone (1) - sold
Specialized Stumpjumper M2 - snapped
Orange ZerO - cracked
Orange AirO - swapped
Sunn Duall - snapped, repaired, cracked
Ellsworth Truth - sold
Psycle Werks Wild Hare - sold
DMR Trailstar - sold
Kona Fire Mountain - sold
On-One Inbred - sold
Rocket FAB (1) - cracked
Rocket FAB (2) - snapped
Pashley 26Mhz (1) - snapped
Pashley 26Mhz (2) - sold
Kona Kilauea - cracked
Bontrager Privateer - still own
Cannondale F700 - still own
Cannondale F900 - stolen
Cannondale Super V Mk3 - stolen
Gary Fisher Ferrous - stolen
Kona A mk1 - stolen
Ellsworth Dare (1) - cracked
Ellsworth Dare (2) - sold
Intense Tracer - sold
Intense Uzzi SLX - cracked
Intense Uzzi DH - sold
Cannondale Super V Mk2 - still own
Schwinn 4 Banger (1) - cracked
Schwinn 4 Banger (2) - gave away
Schwinn Straight 6 (1) - cracked
Schwinn Straight 6 (2) - retired
Schwinn Straight 6 (3) - rebuilt as BTR (see below)
Ellsworth Joker - sold
Specialized SX - sold
Kona A Mk2 - snapped
Klein Pulse - still own
Cannondale Jekyll - sold
Specialized Epic - sold
Kona Hahanna - sold
Kona Cinder Cone (2) - sold
Airborne Black Widow (1) - sold
Cannondale Prophet - sold
Cannondale Scalpel Mk1 - still own
Charge Duster (1) - gave away
Charge Duster (2) - sold
Charge Duster (3) - snapped
Cotic Simple Mk1 - still own
Cotic Simple Mk2 - still own
Cotic Soul prototype Mk3.5 - still own
Cotic Hemlock - still own
Cotic Flare - still own
BTR Fabrications Maschup - still own
Airborne Black Widow (2) - still own
Focus Raven - gave away
On-One C456 Evo - still own