Interview, 1x10Gordon Watt

1x10 - Owen Phillipson

Interview, 1x10Gordon Watt
1x10 - Owen Phillipson
Owen Phillipson - Dig In 2015. Photo: The Press Room

Owen Phillipson - Dig In 2015. Photo: The Press Room

1. Can you introduce yourself and let our readers know a little bit about you?
I ride for Stirling Bike Club and you might know me for my cycling blog, The Drum Up.

2. How long have you been involved in cyclocross?
I did Plean in 2009 but didn’t ride another one, and get into it properly, until 2012.

3. What got you into the sport in the first place?
 I first heard about it on the Two Johns podcast, but without a lie, Dave and John's "Dig In Mate" YouTube videos got me into it properly. The banter and sense of fun drew me in, not to mention the community at the races and on social media. I wanted to be a part of it!

4. Can you remember the first CX race you went to, and how did it go?
Plean 2009, went pretty badly. My bike was heavy and my skills were woeful. (funny pic here)

5. What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen at a cross race?
In Scotland, the guy with the trombone at Dig In and Craig Hardie’s air-horn-hat-thing were both mad!
Seen online - the handbags at the end of this year’s Australian nationals was pretty outrageous.

6. What’s the most embarrassing thing you’ve done at a race, on or off the bike?
Riding Dig In at the Dock 2014 with a seat pack still attached. Or falling in the ditch at Haughcross.

7. Do you have a favourite course, either to ride, or to spectate?
Callendar Park to ride, Dig In for the atmosphere. But I have never done Irvine and I hear that is pretty good.

8. Are there any riders you particularly admire?
Anyone with the skills to ride their bike really fast and lightly over a tricky course.

People on committees, promoting the sport, putting in their personal time for organising - the volunteer community is pretty important and impressive.

9. Any particular highlights from last season?
27th at Strathclyde! My best placing ever. It all seemed to go right with my training in the lead-up, warm-up, the start.

Dig In, the last two laps: catching John Reid, being caught by Martin Steele, and having a proper wee three-way battle in the finale. I naively opened the door to John and he took full opportunity. Can’t remember my placing but it is irrelevant!

10. Finally, what are you looking forward to most this season?*
Just being out there and racing a few events. I was talking to Craig from Stirling Cycle Repairs about approching 40 and how work and life commitments meant I couldn’t train and race as much. “You have to keep up the fight” he said, “Otherwise everything goes downhill”. That quote has been in my head for a few weeks.