TR exclusive: the James Patterson inteview

This time we got together with Australian rider James Patterson to find out more about the guy, what he's up to lately and for some tips on how to execute a good invert. James is killing it on the bike, behind the camera and seems to be a fun dude to have around. Hit the Read More link to jump to the interview!

Name:James Patterson
D.O.B: 22/03/1989
Hometown: Lismore, Victoria
Current location: Melbourne, Victoria, living with my grandma!
Years riding: 6
Sponsors: Leaf Cycles, CTN Imports, Fox Suspension, Bossen Clothing.

Photo by Jason Headley

Q: It feels a bit weird interviewing someone from the total opposite side of our planet, there is just so much stuff to ask. So let’s start with the basics, introduce yourself in a sentence or two.
A: G’day, my James Patterson, most people call me Patto and I like to ride bikes.

Q: How did you get into riding bikes at first?
A: I first got into bikes back when I was probably 14 or so... I saw a mate riding a crappy K-mart styled bike around the car park, hucking off gutters and what not and I thought it was pretty insane. From then on, bikes is all I wanted to know!

Q: What does bike riding mean to you? Why are you into it?
A: I’m in it for the money and the bitchez

Q: Do you take action in any other sports or hobbies aside from biking?
A: I do a lot of photography, mainly of bmx and mtb though, but that would be my main hobbie asides riding. I love photographing mates whilst out riding or looking for awesome spots to shoot, and just getting stoked on the results. Photography made me fall in love with riding even more!

This cover was shot by James. He had a lot of his pictures published in biking magazines.

Q: How is a day in the life of James Patterson?
A: Wake up, generally late, facebook updates whilst in bed. Breakfast, then either work (after checking facebook) or off for a ride for the rest of the day with friends, but if neither of the two, it would be back to sleep for the rest of the day. Most of the day though would be taken up by facebook. Riding and work are just breaks from my hard day of facebooking.

Q: For most people from North America, the only chance they got to see a little of Melbourne is by watching Jason Bourne run around the city... How is it to live there? Good biking scene?
A: Melbourne is amazing! The biking scene here is really strong. Not so much the hardtail mtb community, but the bmx scene is booming. Melbourne in the last couple of years has seen 6 indoor skate parks open their doors for business which has really boosted the scene. You just have to look at the likes of Mini, Matt Whyatt, Alex Swindel-Hurst and Shannon Farrugia to see the depth of riding that those places have generated.

Q: What is your bike setup? Anything special you like about it?
A: Currently I’m running a Leaf Cycles Concept DLX 570mm frame, Fox 831’s, Leaf cranks, bars, grips, stem, sprocket, seat and post, 24” wheelset (soon to be 26”(again)). I seem to switch between 20”/24”/26” more times than change my underwear (around about 3 times a year). I think the main special thing about it would be how ghetto and not dialled my bikes always are, but I suppose that’s how I like them. For instance, at the moment I’m running about 25 spokes in my back wheel and can put my leg through it. It still spins and works, so why fix it?! Everything feels amazing to me which counts.

Q: What is your favorite type of stuff to ride? What is your favorite ''spot''?
A: My favourite type of stuff to ride would definitely be trails and downhill. Though, the trails scene here is fairly small, but growing as it’s very difficult to get a good set of trails running well, unless they’re on private land. Since there are so many skate parks around here, no one really wants to dig anymore. Downhill is also too expensive to do frequently as good tracks are too far away. My favourite spot would have to be Alan Hepburn’s trails Hackham in South Australia. They are always different when we travel over to ride and amazing sessions always go down! Though, I always get flat tires from the freaking three corner jacks.

Q: Tell us something interesting about Australia. What do you really like about it and on the other hand, is there something you would change if you could?
A: Australia is amazing. This country has so much to offer and I’ve only got to see only a tiny bit of it so far, and I live here! I love how it is pretty much summer / spring all year round and that you can ride throughout the year without having to worry about snow. Though, this year and the last have been an exception, it has been ridiculously cold instead of the usual 40+ degree dry summers and has been raining consistently for way too long.

Q: Australian BMXers seem to be going crazy lately! From the Twix to the Triple Backflip, what is your opinion on the way Australian riders make BMX progress?
A: Firstly, the Triple Back Flip is New Zealand’s claim to fame. Jed is a down right freak, but spono’d by an Australian company, so we’ll claim it haha! The scene here is super strong, has an amazing vibe and everyone is just super keen on progressing. You just have to look at the strength of our Downhill riders on the World Circuit. Sam Hill = GOD... There is definitely a special factor. I reckon it’s how Australia breeds men that have to battle with poisonous spiders, deadly snakes and man eating sharks on a day to day basis just to the feed the family that make us god like.

Q: What inspires your to keep riding bikes and why?
A: It’s all I know... Riding is like a drug, it’s so hard to give up as it’s such an amazing feeing and experience, but detrimental to your body. I reckon I’d be pretty lost without bikes... Probably become a washed up hero, addicted to crack, sleeping on a newspaper on the cold pavement of the city if I was to quit.

Q: You obviously have some amazing invert skills. If you were to do a ''how-to'' in a sentence or two, how would it sound?
A: Just pull back, put your knee over the top tube, snap it around then pull it back. Simple as that!

Photo by Sam Illman

Q: What are you into aside from biking? Any school or work going on?
A: I was at Uni... But I quit, because I’m pretty damn lazy... Now I’m just labouring for a friend as a sort of short term fix... Really should find something more long term! Haha

Q: What kind of music are you into? Is there any particular bands or artists you would recommend?
A: My music taste is really diverse... I can listen to something along the lines of Sigur Ros, but then straight away switch to something like Job For A Cowboy... Bit silly really! A band I’m really digging lately would definitely be The Amity Affliction. I went and saw them twice on a weekend, soooo amazing!

Q: How is the beer in Australia? Is there any brands you enjoy that you would like to share with us?
A: The beer is pretty good! Pure Blondes goes alright, VB and Carlton’s dominate. But my taste buds crave the flavour of Passion Pop and Goon more so. How can you pass up 2 for $11 (more than enough for a night) and a chance to win free rent for 2 months! BIWINNING!

Q: Tell us something about you that would surprise us.
A: I ride a Kangaroo to work every day. His name is Paul and he has 3 fingers.

Q: Do you travel a lot to ride bikes? Any good trip memories?
A: Definitely last Easter’s trip with Riding Way. That was a wild weekend, and some rare stuff went down. Mixing a 20% extra deal on a 4L cask of Goon for $9 and a big group of rowdy bmx riders, you know something is going to happen! Haha, I woke up 3 doors down from where I was meant to stay in a bed with two girls I didn’t know and massive headache. Good times!

Q: Where would you like to travel and why?
A: I really really want to travel to Whistler, all my friends are going or are already there, and I’m getting left behind! The scene over there looks amazing and I just want to go and see what the all the fuss is about.

Q: What is your opinion on the biking scene around the world right now? Would you change something about it?
A: The scene is looking amazing lately! The amount of competitions around the world now is great and the scene is definitely growing and heading in the right direction! The only thing I would change is Slopestyle... Make it more flowy and not so fuck off big!!

Q: Do you have any projects or plans for the upcoming years? How do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years?
A: No plans really, I’m pretty lost on that front... Think I might go back and study, but not really sure! In 5 to 10 years I hope to have found what I really want to do and be still shredding bikes!!!!

Q: Any shout outs or thanks?
A: Thanks to Matt at CTN Imports for helping me out, Frank at Leaf Cycles, Greg at Fox for helping me with my constant fork troubles and also Kurt at Bossen for killer stuff! All you guys are amazing! Also a big shout out to Alex Swindel-Hurst for letting me raid his fridge for dinner and poach his internet so I could get this done, you’re a douche mate, but I love you ♥♥ Big thanks to you guys at The Rise also, The Rise ROCKS!

Q: Thanks a lot for answering this. We wish you loads of fun and success on and off the bike in the future!
A: Cheers guys!! I better head off and throw another shrimp on the barby and go play my didgeridoo for couple of hours!

June 10, 2011

TR exclusive: the Logan Peat interview

''It is better to regret something you did, than something you didn’t.''
- Logan Peat

We've known Logan for quite a while now and aside from being a really talented bike rider, he's also a super cool dude. Logan always has a positive attitude and he has been killing it on the slopestyle circuit lately, so it was the perfect time for an interview with the man. Hit the read more link to read the intreview!

Name: Logan Peat
d.o.b: November 5, 1989
Hometown: Owen Sound, Ontario
Current location: Sunshine Coast, BC
Years riding: 7 years
Sponsors: Santa Cruz Bikes, Deity Components, Geax, Fiveten and Demon Dirt

Q: Let's start this with a little introduction. Tell us a bit about who is Logan Peat to help the readers out there that never heard about you.
A: I grew up in Ontario and started riding in high school and fell in love with it. From that time on, it has been a biking lifestyle. I moved to Alberta for a couple of years for college and then finished up at Capilano in BC for Mountain Bike Operations last year. Still in BC and loving it.

Q: Tell us about your actual bike setup. How do you like it so far and what would you change about it?
A: For a hard tail, I have been riding the Santa Cruz Jackal for a while and the frame is sick, it is super light and has the right geo for dirt jumping and street. The frame is built up with Deity components that feel awesome, look good and won’t let you down. For wheels I have always run profile hubs and for rims I haven’t found the perfect ones yet. For tires I started running Geax last season and I am very happy with them. I been running Booze Light tires on my Jackal, they are super good for street, nice and sticky.

Q: A couple years ago, I remember you had some really good street videos. Do you still ride as much street as before?
A: No I don’t ride as much street since I moved out west. I still love street, but usually end up riding trails with buddies.

Q: Who are your regular riding buddies?
A: When I am on the Coast, I ride with Evan Young (The Intern) and the Coastal Crew boys.

Q: I heard you spend a lot of time out west, what influences you to go there?
A: BC is just awesome. It has an amzing biking scene. There is so much to ride, lots of riders, girls and the views are epic.

Q: You've been off the bike because of an injured leg for quite a while lately, what happened to you exactly and how are you doing right now?
A: I broke my tib/fib last August in Colorado. It was a compound fracture, which means the bones come out of the leg. I had surgery down there and than moved back to Ontario where I have been recovering for the past 9 months. The original surgery didn’t work and the bones did not fuse together properly. So I underwent another surgery this winter. Now I am feeling a lot stronger, not riding fully yet but, living a normal life and enjoying some road biking.

Q: You rode in quite a bunch of contests in the last years. How do you like to compete against some of the best riders out there? What motivates you to do it?
A: It is awesome to ride with and meet the riders I have looked up to over the years. It is very inspiring and something I never thought would happen. I think the chance to make a name for yourself is what motivates me. Also contests are fun, you get to ride new courses with your buddies.

Q: What do you think of slopestyle events these days? Would you change something about all of this?
A: I think some of the slopestyle events these days are crazy. All the features seem to be getting bigger and everyone is throwing down so hard. If I could change anything about these events, I would like to see that the courses be designed with more flow in mind and are more fun to ride and not necessarily built around the gnarliest tricks going down.

Q: Do you travel a lot? Any good anecdotes you would like to share?
A: Yes, I have done a lot of traveling. I don’t have any amazing stories to tell, things have gone smooth for the most part. All I would say is don’t always trust your GPS. Also maybe not the best idea to take a beat up 80’s something car, on a 20 hour trek to Colorado.

Q: What kind of influence would you like to leave in this world and why?
A: I would like to be able to think that maybe I influenced someone to live life and really enjoy themselve. It is all about having fun and doing what you love. If there is something you want to do, just go for it, you will never know unless you try.

Q: What do you like to ride the most lately and why?
A: I haven’t been riding for a while. I have been watching a lot of BMX videos, and I have got to say I love watching the huckers send it to flat. Being back out west I am already stoked on riding down hill again. I can’t wait to get from the road back on to the dirt on my Santa Cruz.

Q: Whats a perfect day in the life of Logan Peat?
A: It would include a full day of riding with the bros, good food and some beverages later on.

Q: What is your opinion on the way BMX and MTB are the same while being so different? Would you change something about that?
A: I think BMX is awesome and has a huge influence on mountain biking. If I could change anything, I would like to see the free ride scene in mountain biking progress to the level we are seeing BMX today.

Q: How do you think biking influenced your life so far? What would you be doing if you never got into biking?
A: Biking has influenced my life a great deal. Biking has taught me that hard work and staying focused does pay off and I am where I am right now because of that. If I never got into riding, I have no idea what I would be doing now. Most likely partying way too much.

Q: The way you ride always made everything look so easy and smooth, what are your influences when it comes to bike riding?
A: BMX definitely influences my riding style. I have always been a big fan of the smooth guys like Chase Hawk on one hand, well on the other I have also been a big fan of street riding with riders like Chase D and Eddie C.

Q: What kind of music are you into lately? Any good artists you would recommend?
A: I am in to a bunch of different types of music. Everything from metal to the classics. Lately I have been rocking a bunch of Eric Clapton.

Q: What is the best advice anyone ever gave to you?
A: It is better to regret something you did, than something you didn’t.

Q: Do you have any plans for the next year or so?
A: Yes, I just want to get healthy and strong again and get back on the competition circuit.

Q: Pretty much every bicycle rider loves to travel. Where would you really like to go and why?
A: I like going anywhere new, but I have always wanted to go to Europe. I really love Utah and would go back there anytime.

Q: You are about to get alcohol for a crazy party night, what do you get and why?
A: Beers, because they a delicious. The flavor changes all the time, depends on how I am feeling that evening.

Q: Any interesting party anecdotes?
A: None that I want to put in print.

Q: Is there anything you would like to add? Any shoutouts?
A: I would like to thank all of my sponsors. They have been really supportive throughout my injury and recovery and this is greatly appreciated. I would like to send a huge shout out to my riding buddies from BC, Ontario, Quebec and Cali. I don’t think riding would be half as much fun without you guys. You are all a great inspiration. Also a huge thanks to my parents for the support and putting up with the riding lifestyle.

Q: Thanks a lot for answering all of this. We wish you success and load of fun in the future!
A. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to do this interview, The Rise rocks.

Heres a 4 year old video of Logan shredding some part and dirt in Ontario:

May 26, 2011

TR exclusive: the Michael Gray interview

Photo by Harry Matias Silegren

Mike is one of those dudes that progressed so much in the last year or so. He dropped a bunch of really good videos, placed 4th at the 2010 Pepsi Pro-Am in Montreal, and he's an awesome dude to have around. We catched up with him to see how he is doing these days and to find out more about the guy. Click the Read More link to read his interview!

Name: Michael Gray
d.o.b: November 10th, 1992
Hometown: Parksville, BC
Current location: Newmarket, Ontario
Years riding: 5
Sponsors:Core BMX shop

Q: Tell us a bit about your story. What got you into riding bikes in the first place?
A: When I was young me and my brother would always set up little jumps out on the street and see how far we could go, from there I got a real bike and started jumping more and more with friends,bigger and bigger. And seeing awesome riders at the park always was inspiring to keep riding and having fun. I rode Mountain bikes for a really long time, learned a lot in mountain bikes, but BMX took over for me, and now I cant get enough of it! My best buddies are still Mountain bikers and I love riding with Mountain bikes!

Q: What are you up to these days? School? Work? How is a day in the life of Mike Gray?
A: I graduated last year so this year is pretty chillin' so far... I work a little bit, but mainly just try and ride everyday. at this point I kind of need to ride everyday, if I dont it feels like something was missing from my day and its definitely the best part of my day. Addicted! When I'm not riding I'm usually hanging out with friends chillin' or gettin' rowdy!

Q: For how long have you been riding bikes?
A: Well I've been riding for a long time since I was young but I guess about 5 years I've been super hooked on it. About 2 or 3 years MTB and 2 or 3 years BMX.

Q: How is it ridingwise in your area? Where do you like to ride the most locally?
A: I live in newmarket Ontario, a couple years ago there was so many people who rode and it was simple to get a session going in town. Now theres just a few people who ride and most of the people who do can't ride a lot there usually busy, so a lot of the time I am at joyride150, cause there's always a session there and its winter for like 8 months of the year and at least 2 more months of the year its raining outside lol. But if there's a nice day no doubt I'll be outside at the local park, Richmond Green, or wherever there is an outdoor sesssion, or my backyard ramp!

Q: What would you be into if biking never showed up to you?
A: Fuuuccckk man! I would probably be going to college or university and live a girlfriend/work/school based life haha, definitely soo happy I'm into biking but if I wasn't I know I would still have a lot of fun, cause I got some awesome friends!

Q: Who do you ride with on a regular basis?
A: Well there's a bunch of locals at Joyride that I see all the time, but my main homies of course are Matt Macduff, Ryan Kor, Brett Rheeder(all mtb's), Ori F.S, PJ, and soooo many more people that are all fuckin' awesome.

Q: What is your bike setup at the moment? Is there anything particular that you like on your bike? Any mods?
A: I'm riding a DK Team frame, Demolition Enarson Bars, Profile Cranks, demo back wheel, everything else is pretty random. My bike is usually in pretty rough shape, have to fix at least one thing on it a day lol but I still love it, would be nice if it was a bit smoother tho.

Q: You have obviously progressed a lot lately. What is your motivation to ride your bike like you do?
A: Rap, Dennis Enarson, a bunch of other amazing riders, and the fact that the funnest part of riding for me is progressing. Like the days that you learn something new are always the funnest days. Also a lot of people dont understand biking and think its a waste of time. Obviously it doesnt matter what they think but it would be nice to show and prove to those people that you can do something with it.

Q: Do you get injured a lot? What is your worst injury so far?
A: I broke my leg (both bones) 2 years ago, that was pretty shitty. I definitely fall daily, but try and stay safe by taking things step by step and not just hucking myself.

Q: It seems like the Toronto area has a pretty solid riding scene, and with the help of Joyride, the level of progression is quite impressive around there. What do you think about all this?
A: Stoked on all of it, Joyride was Toronto's answer to put our city on the map, and there is so many kids now that are amazing at riding and who are progressing faster than ever with the help of joyride. And being local there, theres so many kids and people that you see there everyday, It's a pretty sick community.

Photo by Steve Hayes

Q: I remember about 3 years ago you were riding a 26 incher and learning flyout barspins. It would be interesting to have your opinion on the hate about wheel diameter that sometimes occurs in this world.
A: Well I will always respect mountain biking, I think its awesome and the people that ride them I would say are the most humble people on bikes no doubt, but BMX is just so much faster and funner to progress on cause the bike is smaller and just easier and nicer to boot around. I find if you learn something on a BMX it is easier to go do it on a Mountain bike rather then learning it on a mountain bike. I do think park is funner on a BMX tho now that I ride pegs, and I will never take them off.

Q: What is your opinion about the BMX scene right now? Would you change something about it?
A: The only thing I would change would be to bring it into Canada more. I think Canadian BMX has so much to offer, and it could be seen more but besides that Its the best sport in the world no doubt!

Q: Do you have any other hobbies beside BMX?
A: Hanging out with friends, and living life lol.

Q: What kind of music do you enjoy? Do you listen to other artists than Lil Wayne?
A: Haha Weezy definitely gives me motivation, lots of rap, Cudi, Wiz, mainly but I definitely like listening to some rock and every genre of music from time to time.

Q: Is there a trick that you try to do for a long time but just can't figure out?
A: Welll I would say barspins are constantly hard to figure out, like I'll learn a variation with it but there is endless progression with the trick and there is always something to try with it.

Photo by Richard Desaulniers Jr.

Q: Why do ontarian people say ''pop'' instead of soda?
A: Because "pop" is gang.

Q: Do you travel a lot? Any trips planned?
A: Travel quite a bit, there is always weekend getaways planned to skateparks either in the states or quebec. Got a big trip planned driving across Canada and maybe down into Cali with Ori and Ryan Eles two shredders who are ma boy's! lots of edits planned for that trip.

Q: How would you like your life to be in 5 years? Any goals or projects?
A: In 5 years I definitely hope to still be riding, but definitely having a steady income and lots of freedom! always lots of goals and projects day to day.

Q: If you could choose 3 BMX riders and mix them together to create the ultimate BMXer, who would you choose and why?
A: Dennis Enarson, Garret Reynolds, Drew Bezanson most likely, It would be the flowiest, street, ramp riding machine and it would probably be impossible to beat, you could probably call it 21st centuries Matt Hoffmann.

Q: What advice would you give to anyone out there riding a bike?
A: Do you, have fun, be yourself, do what you want on a bike.

Q: Anything you would like to add?
A: Thank my mom and Dad for supporting me, and thanks to all my friends and Ridaz that make BMX as awesome and fun as it is!

Here is Mike's latest web video in case you didn't see it:

May 20, 2011