Adam Williss

Adam Williss

I’ve seen Adam 3 times over the last 3 years, each of them at the Adelaide Dirty Dozen.



This is his story.

  • Tell us a little about how you got into cycling?

I’ve always been very active across a number of sports but eventually my left knee gave me some grief. I ended up getting the cartilage removed over two arthroscopes and my days of impact sport were over. A friend of mine got me interested in road cycling in around October 2011 (where it took me until my third attempt to ride up the Southern Expressway without stopping) and by March 2012 I had completed the 3 Peaks in Victoria. Fair to say that I was hooked.

  • You have an involvement in the Adelaide cycling scene with your efforts organising some of Adelaide toughest rides, can you describe what you do and how you came to be involved?

I get bored riding the same routes all the time and I can’t stand riding in the suburbs or heading to Outer Harbour. Urgh! I just found myself exploring new roads and challenging myself to go further and have adventures on my bike. What started as a twitter exchange between a few of us become the seed of putting on an Adelaide Dirty Dozen in 2012. I thought it would be a group ride with about a dozen people rocking up, but about 70 odd people showed up – around half of whom completed the ride. Clearly there was interest in some challenging rides that the community events just didn’t meet. Three years later and almost 250 people attempted the 2014 Adelaide Dirty Dozen event – purely through word of mouth. I’m still kind of carrying the can for it!

Next month I have organised a particularly difficult ride – the ‘Fleurieu 300’: a 300km return trip taking in the major climbs of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. Totalling almost 4500m vertical metres, it is our third attempt at this event and technically (a re-route due to a road closure nailed our first attempt, and hot weather hurt us last year) the ride has never been completed. It will be around a 14 hour day in the saddle including stops.

Everesting, long rides, lots of verts, new roads…. You name it. I’m there or thereabouts!

  • How many bikes do you own and what is your main go to bike?

Most will appreciate that having a young family means that my cash isn’t all that free to throw at bikes. I have a fairly basic Merida Scultura road bike and consumes 99% of my kilometres. I have an el’ cheapo mountain bike that I use to putt around behind the kids when they are riding, but it never gets ridden on the trails in anger… Not my thing.


  • What bike do you covet?

All of them.

  • How do you store your bikes?

My road bike lives inside beside my dining table…ready for a quick opportunity to escape. My mountain bike lives outside.

  • What cycling specific tools do you have in your “bike shed”?

I’m no bike mechanic. I can change my tyres and clean my chain…. Help?

  • Do you do all your own maintenance or do you use a LBS? If so, which one?

Paul from Cycle2U is a brilliant mobile bike mechanic who – for a very, very reasonable price – will come to my work and service my bike in the car park here and I don’t have to go anywhere. Google him. He is booked weeks in advance, but he is worth it! (0459 215 116)

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  • What do you love about cycling?

Adventures, freedom, exercise, mates, exploring and epics!

  • What annoys most about cycling?

I’ve started a recent habit of trolling rednecks on Facebook who preach about the desire to run down every cyclist they see in their car… I need to stop doing it. But it is fun – a guilty pleasure “correcting” such people. And I know I shouldn’t. So I guess this is one habit I need to kick – and it annoys me that it is an issue in the first place!

  • Other than yourself, who is your favourite cyclist?

I’m also in the Peter Sagan camp. Just brings so much extra colour to professional cycling. Love his antics off the bike – but his ability on the bike simply amaze me.

  • What is your craziest/fondest cycling memory?

Without a doubt, my craziest cycling memory is flaking it by the side of the road alongside about 10 of my colleagues at the top of the Parawa climb during the Fleurieu 300 last year. It was a day in the mid-thirties and we were cooked, but still about 150km from home.

My fondest memory is completing the 2012 3 Peaks in Victoria – such an awesome day on the bike in an amazing place to ride with a great bunch of blokes.

  • What is your favourite post ride coffee spot, and what would you normally buy?

Red Berry Espresso without a doubt. I work very close by so stop there most mornings post-ride, and Walter has been a major supporter of the Dirty Dozen and really gets behind it every year. Just a fantastic café with awesome coffee. And on that note, I have a boring flat white most times – but when it is hot, nothing beats a RBE iced coffee!

  • Do you have a nickname?

Not really….but I’ve lost a bit of weight this year and my climbing times have improved. The name “Slim Jim” seems to have slipped out of the mouths of a few friends over the last few months.

  • Finish this sentence “When I’m on my bike I…..”

Am wishing that this annoying creak in my pedal would go away” (this morning anyway)

  • If you could ride anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I’m currently exploring a cycling trip to northern Italy and the French Alps for September next year… So I guess that is the answer at the moment.

  • What is your favourite training route and who with? Can you provide a strava (or other) map for inclusion?

Like I mentioned, I don’t ride the same routes twice very often and don’t have a strava loop. A route that is vertical and punchy is probably something I would look for if I needed a pre-work hit out. Based from Red Berry Espresso, I guess anywhere from Belair Rd across to Norton Summit 🙂

  • What is the biggest cycling lie you have told your partner?

How lame am I. I’ve never told a cycling lie to a partner…. I know I couldn’t get away with it!

  • What would you like your partner to buy you for your next birthday?

Kit. Or something to satisfy my sock fetish.

  • Is there a local cycling outfit/company/cycling club/cycling group/person that you would like to plug?

I’m currently really enjoying a very solid hit out on Tuesday mornings with a local crew based on Melbourne’s Hells 500 guys. Called “Ride from Wherever You Are” or #RFWYA we meet at Red Berry at 6am and have a different route to smash every week. We ride for a bit over an hour, hard, with rolling regroups and then come back to either Red Berry or occasionally elsewhere for a post-ride brew and banter. It is a great friendly bunch, fairly small at the moment, but growing. Anyone is welcome.