Alex is 22 and has been cycling for 3 years. He started cycling when he lived in Melbourne, and moved back to his home town Adelaide earlier 2016 because of the good weather and even better cycling culture.
You’ll be able to find him riding in the Adelaide hills and on instagram as @looc.cool. He is part of the Soup Boys Cycling Collective which is a semi-unprofessional up and coming lean teen cycling team.
- How and when did you get started in cycling.
I got into cycling about 3 years ago after my bro gave me a fixie and told me i should start riding to work to save time when i lived in Melbourne and caught public transport. Then I started riding around the city with some mates and fell in love straight away.
- Are you just a roadie, or do you cross over to other disciplines?
I mostly just ride road but used to love getting onto the boards for some Tuesday track nights.
- How many bikes do you own and what is your main go to bike?
At the moment i just own 2 bikes. I have a 2013 Boardman AiR (Chris) that i use for commuting and general riding around. All of my training and racing is done on my BMC tmr01 (Denis). I probably end up spending the same amount of time on both since i don’t drive, so I’d have to say they’re both my go to bike.
- How do you store your bikes?
Well Denis sleeps in the living room/hallway inside the house and Chris stays outside at the moment, but i spotted a bit of rust on his cassette the other day so I’ll probably bring him inside too…
- Do you do all your own maintenance or do you use a LBS? If so, which one?
I do most of my own maintenance but for anything that I either can’t be bothered doing myself (glueing tubs), or don’t have the tools to do myself (truing wheels, installing headsets/bottom brackets, cutting steerers), I see the friendly staff at Treadly on Ebenezer place in the city.
- What cycling specific tools do you have in your “bike shed”?
My “bike shed” aka “bedroom” has a pretty basic setup. I pretty much get by with a good set of allen keys, torx keys, spanners, a track pump, and basic maintenance stuff like tire levers. I’d say the only bike specific tool i have is my track pump. I don’t even use a torque wrench.
- What is your favourite piece of cycling kit or accessory?
It would have to be my Pearl Izumi Pro Leader road shoes. They’re light enough, stiff enough, and just fit so nicely. They have worn better than any other shoe I’ve used too.
- What do you love about cycling?
The reason I fell in love with cycling and the reason i will cycle for as long as i can is just the sense of freedom. You can go wherever you want, for as long as you want, as fast or slow as you want, experience things you wouldn’t be able to without a bike, meet new people, push yourself beyond what you thought you were capable of, and stay healthy and fit in the process.
- Is there anything that annoys you?
The long sock dogma and being hungry.
- If you could sit down with the local politician, what advice (cycling related) would you give them to help improve cycling in Adelaide?
I’m no expert on the topic but i think the most important thing is to get as many people cycling as possible. I think a lot of people are pushed away from cycling because they don’t feel confident riding next to cars on the road, or next to pedestrians on the footpath. So my suggestion would be to separate bike lanes from the footpath and the road to accommodate for newer and less confident riders. That and more beautiful, instagram worthy bike paths.
- Other than yourself, who is your favourite cyclist?
Mark Cavendish. Best sprinter of all time hands-down. No argument or discussion, he is the best. Sorry Cipo.
- If you could have dinner with 3 people from the cycling world, who would they be?
Oleg Tinkov, Tom Boonen, and Luca Paolini.
- What are your craziest/fondest cycling memories?
I’d have to say the Willunga Hill stage of this year’s Santos Tour Down Under. Just riding with mates in an amazing atmosphere in my favourite place to ride in Australia. I will also never forget the days of riding fixies around Melbourne during the summer of 2013/2014.
- What is your favourite post ride coffee/tea spot, and what would you normally buy as a treat?
Can’t go past Cherry Darling’s Bakehouse. The cupcakes and custard filled donuts are something else.
- Have you ridden overseas? If so, where? If not, where would it be?
Unfortunately i haven’t had the opportunity to ride overseas yet, but I’d really like to go to California and Colorado. The roads over there look great.
- What is your favourite training route?
At the moment I’d have to say it’s Gorge rd > Corkscrew > Cherryville > Woods Hill rd > Greenhill rd > Mt Osmond. Plenty of steep stuff and you’re never too far from the city if it all becomes too hard.
- What is the biggest cycling lie you have told your partner?
I don’t have a partner (I’m single and ready to mingle) but I’ve told my Dad I’d saved $4000 for a bike but actually just paid for it on my credit card because i didn’t want to wait.
- What would you like for your next birthday?
I wouldn’t mind a trainer…
- Is there a local cycling outfit/company/cycling club/cycling group/person that you would like to plug?
I’d like to give a PSA type shout out to 2 particularly shining beacons of the cycling scene.
First one being the Soup Boys for their love and support as my racing career grows through its infancy, and for the regular good times aboard our two wheeled machines. The second is a store back in Melbourne, Essendon Cyclery for the type of patience normally only reserved for parents and primary school teachers. They’ve helped with new bikes, broken bikes, last minute services and tune ups and just general banter yet haven’t blacklisted me or any of the Soup Boys from their store…yet
Thanks Alex, a pleasure to chat, and thanks for the tip about Cherry Darlings Bakehouse , a café I haven’t been to yet but is deefinitley on the agenda.