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Wethepeople Anytime Now DVD

  • Posted by will
  • 1 June 2011

We have a copy of the new Wethepeople DVD to give away.

This video has been a long time in the making (as the title suggests!) and features a snap shot of the Wethepeople team.

Wethepeople have always had an eclectic mix of people on a team that spans several continents and this video (to use an archaic term) features some of the big names on the team and some of the smaller names as well.

There is a bunch of bonus stuff on here too so it’s well worth a watch.

All you have to do to win a copy is to send in a picture that you think encapsulates the idea of 'wethepeople'.

It need not be anything to do with the bike company, with BMX or even bike related.

It is a very old phrase that gets overused and we would like to see what it means to people in the here and now.

Send your picture to [email protected] by next Friday 10th June and we’ll pick a winner, send the DVD out to you and post the picture on the blog here.

Hugo and Pete from SAS came up to our Cardigan HQ to build a plan about us (that includes you) helping with their annual fund raising raffle.

howies are giving away the headline prize and we will be asking you our whole database to sell tickets to help hit their target of £20,000.  Last year they raise £12,000, so we have a mountain to climb this time.

As well as howies kit, there will also be hand made wooden boards,

These are some reasons to get involved;

90p in every pound raised goes to fighting their causes.

They directly lobby industry with solutions to the problems they are causing.

Their support comes from many other users of the coast. Walkers, runners, body boarders, kite surfers, sun bathers, swimmers and dog walkers.

They are working as hard to prevent marine pollution, climate change and litter as much as sewage.

They are have a network of reps all over the UK who give their time to campaign, raise money and awareness and get hand on help to beach clean.

So when the time comes all we ask of  you is to sell a few raffle tickets to your friends and send the cash to SAS and we will give you regular updates on where we are, Blue Peter style.

And if you can spread the word over your social network to spread the word, we have the potential to give them the cash to campaign the hardest they ever have done.

And you could win an amazing prize.

Just got this video through from Mr. Matt Page.

It's a great insight into what goes on at a 24 hour solo MTB race.

Inspiring stuff.

Our latest addition to the BMX team Lawrence 'Pipe' Williams is pushing himself in a new direction. He is set to do the three peaks  (Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon) this weekend, which is I'm sure most readers are aware (and some have direct experience) a challenge in itself. For a man known to us best for his skills on a 20" bicycle (and with a shovel in his hand) this is seemingly even more of a challenge. Most BMXers wouldnt have the fitness levels (here im talking about the 'freestyle' side of BMX) to come close to completing one of these.

But Lawrence is not doing the 3 peaks in the regular fashion. That would seem far too easy/dull. He is doing it as a member of the 'Men of Sparsholt' a Tug of War team that i can only assume originates from the village of Sparsholt in Oxfordshire. Being this way inclined, their approach to the 3 peaks is unorthodox: "On each peak (Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon) we will have a tug of war competition against whoever we can find - or just against each other.  Why?  Because we can and, for some strange reason, we must!". So this is what Lawrence is up to next weekend. If you happen to be on any of the three peaks be aware of a potential proposition for a game of Tug of War.

This idea is not simply the result of Oxfordshire village life. There is a purpose to the event and the team hope to raise a lot of money for the Helen & Douglas House that is a fantastic charity that cares for children and young adults with life-shortening conditions.  Helen & Douglas House looks after people from birth to 35 and their families, in the most difficult of times. So the guys have a justgiving page and would be very grateful for anyone who can add to their running total as well as anyone who can make it to the top of Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike or Snowdon and fancies a tug.


The mini welsh adventure

  • Posted by dan
  • 11 May 2011

It's a slight change from the wintery pictures you have been seeing of late but here is my April blog.

Me and beatrice set off on an adventure to explore some of wales on my parent's bikes with plenty of luggage including camping gear, in total nearly 20kg on each bike.

We saw some amazing views, riding from Haverfordwest all along the coast line until Cardigan and stopped there for 3 days on the howies photoshoot then continued on....

Tenby has the best food spots.

Aberaeron has the best fresh fish.

Aberystwyth the most students in drag on friday night.

Elan valley, just lots of ruins and never-ending windy hills on which the time passes faster by wheeleing the bike, looking at rivers and playing games like guessing the number of ruins or trying not to say 'nice' for the duration of the day.

The road before elan valley has the most random post box next to some woods in the middle of nowhere.

Devils bridge, some lovely waterfalls.

Rhaeder has the best quiche lunch!

And home is home :)

We had pretty sore legs and some well tested merino from howies at the end of the last day after riding 50miles on mountainbikes and luggage over the elan valley hills and back home but it was well worth it.

Here are just a few of the pictures we took. hope you enjoy them



SSEC 2011

I've just returned to the green isle from a whistle stop tour of Europe, including: Denmark, Germany and Belgium. Several thousand road miles then, and many petrol station snacks (best in Germany), an array of strong beers (I recommend 'Maredsous Abbaye') and a plethora of hipsters (Copenhagen is rather trendy). I was on a search for the soul of mountain biking that I suspected lay somewhere in a sunny field within Europe, and also to race in the highly prestigious, incredibly un-serious Single Speed European Championship..

Single Speed mountain bikes are exactly as the title suggests – mountain bikes (MTB's) with one gear only. Why, you may ask, would a MTB be devolved into something far less functional than the multi-geared workhorse that the last two decades has crafted it into? The answer, I'm afraid, is not a simple one.

People’s reasons for riding and racing Single Speeds vary from a desire for simplicity, through to a lust for something entirely impractical – sense of humour needed. Pitch up at a Single Speed European Champs (SSEC's) and you will absolutely not find racing snakes warming up on exercise bikes.. OH no, at an SSEC outing you are far more likely to find a man wearing nothing more than a nappy, a 6ft lady sporting stripes and affro, or even a team of Morphs, than you are to come across an obsessive racer.

Possibly, no, definitely, the most fun I've had racing my bike for quite some time, I'll remember this one and its fabulous location for many years to come. As for the after party, well, I'm doing my best to erase those memories! Only kidding - what a great bunch of people having some good old fashioned fun.

The soul of my sport does survive and prosper then.

The Single Speed European Champions 2011 are: Gemma Frier from Scotland and Julien Conan from France – well done to ‘em.

In 2012 the event will be hosted by the aforementioned Morphs in the south of France – and you can certainly count me in!

Oh, and there's still time to enter the World Champs in Ireland this August – http://www.sswc2011.ie/

Thank you to Bruno for organising such a great weekend’s racing, to Kingdom Bike (Chris and Nick) for forcing me out of my downhill habit, and to Riders Refuge, Bike Dirty and howies, of course.. Cheers!

News from the AW11 Photoshoot.

  • Posted by emma
  • 4 May 2011

Just had a photo through from Hollie who is on the AW11 Photoshoot.

They have been in the middle of nowhere all day, lucky them!

Sounds like it is super organised thanks to Millie – Producer Extraordinaire.

The office is quiet without them all.

Alastair’s Microadventures

  • Posted by ruben
  • 26 April 2011

Back in January I was lucky enough to ride the Strathpuffer 24 hour race with Mr. Al Humphreys.

Al is an adventurer through and through. If you broke him in half like a stick of rock he would have it written in his bones. But please don't do that.

This year, he is keeping his itchy feet mainly inside the UK and attempting to keep his hunger for adventure fed with a series of 'Microadventures'

The video below and his own words explain it better than I can - follow him on twitter and his blog for plenty more tales of micro adventure.

Microadventure 2: Use Your Weekend

My aim for the year is to showcase small, cheap, simple, close-to-home microadventures.

Microadventures serve to scratch the itch for adventurous souls trapped by the bludgeoning of fate in sensible office jobs. They act as stepping stones for people who dream of a major expedition but feel that at the moment they are not quite ready. And they are a kick up the backside to anyone whinging and whining with excuses about how they don’t have the time or the money or the skills to get out there and challenge themselves. I have started deliberately small, with ideas that absolutely anyone can manage. In January I entered a race. And in February I went for a weekend away. These are micro microadventures. But they are brilliant.

If you add up all the weekends, statutory leave and Bank Holidays you’ll discover that you have at least 132 free days every year. 132 days is a long time. You could row across the Indian Ocean in 132 days. The difficulty of course is the fragmented nature of these 132 days. You have to be determined to use your weekends rather than frittering them with IKEA and the X-Factor.

So my microadventure for this month is a challenge to Use Your Weekend. Annoyingly I live about as far from wilderness as is possible. And yet by late morning on Saturday I was still high on a Welsh hillside, breathing in fresh air, looking down over the sunlit Bristol Channel, and about to scare myself silly on a downhill mountain bike trail.

Go somewhere you have never been before. Ride hard. Get wet, cold and muddy. Laugh with your mates. Then relax, aching and exhausted, having earned your beer. Use Your Weekend.

Do you have any examples of inspiring, invigorating weekend microadventures?

And do you have any recommendations of microadventures I can try this year?
Have your say in the comments or let me know on Twitter @al_humphreys

Welcome Matt Page

  • Posted by ruben
  • 26 April 2011

I'm very happy to welcome Matt to team howies.
We share the same back yard, and ride the same trails.
We will be helping him out with off the bike stuff.

Many of you will already know who Matt is and like me, you may have been lapped by him at more than a couple of races out there - but for those of you who don't know, here's an introduction in his own words -

For some people cycling is just a hobby, but for me I am extremely fortunate to be able to say that it is my job. It hasn't been easy to get where I am now and it has taken many years of hard work and dedication.

I won't bore everyone with my life history, but let's just say that I have always been active and enjoyed the outdoors. Cycling, running, walking, climbing and camping were all hobbies and the love of the outdoors is something that has stuck with me. Racing a bike didn't really get going until I was in my early 20's and I started entering the relatively new Marathon/Enduro events that were springing up. I seemed to go far better in the longer races than in the shorter XC races.

If I were to pick one thing that made me into the cyclist that I am now it would be getting a job as a cycle courier in Cardiff. I went from riding a few times a week to riding 80-100 miles a day 5 days a week, then racing the Mountain Bike on the weekend. It was tough going at times, but it gave me a great base fitness and I the results started to improve pretty quickly. In 2007 I won a 12hr solo race and then a 24hr race in 2008 and each year since along with other results along the way. The job as a courier lasted for 2 years until I decided to return back to Llandovery where I was raised in order to train with more control and structure. Another 2 years of tough training whilst working full time as a postman paid dividends and I won the inaugural UK 24hr solo championship in May 2010 and had the chance of a lifetime to travel to Australia to compete in the World Championships where I finished 6th despite what I consider to be a bad race.

Fast forward to 2011 and the chance to become a full time athlete presented itself, which is what I have been working towards for so many years. It wasn't an easy decision to make, but I am already feeling the difference as the consistency of my training has improved and also the amount of rest and recovery time.

One big reason why I love the outdoors and cycling so much is the beautiful Welsh countryside that I live in. Living near the town of Llandovery in Carmarthenshire just 40 miles from howies base in Cardigan is to me the perfect cycling area. Quiet country roads, big road climbs and amazing scenery give me endless choices and motivation to “get out and ride”. The off-road riding is pretty special as well, with the Cwm Rhaeadr trail just 2 miles up the road and Brechfa about 20 miles away I have to keep reminding myself how lucky I am and grant it for granted far too often.

This year is already well underway and my racing and training has been going well. I have moved up to Elite in XC racing, a dramatic departure from 24hr solo racing but something that I feel benefits my training. My first major event of the year is less than 2 weeks away, the UK 24hr solo championships where I hope to defend my title. Later this year I am going to tackle some big races including the Mega Avalanche and Etape d'Tour on consecutive days and a big stage race called Iron Bike, which is an 8-day race in the Italian Alps with an average of over 3000m climbing and 100km distance per day!

2011 is going to be a really exciting year and I am extremely happy to have the support of howies, especially as they are such a local company to me. I'll be keeping everyone updated of my racing and training progress as the year unfolds.

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