A little bit about Ed..
I’m a 23-year-old recent graduate. Although I’m currently based in Salisbury, I’ve only lived there for the last couple of years. I had an unorthodox childhood and lived variously in Kuwait, Norway, the USA, and South Africa. I grew up exploring deserts, climbing mountains, and visiting far-flung cities - staying still is something I’m just not comfortable with!
As a result of this background I’m saddled with an insatiable wanderlust that seems to be best satisfied by taking on endurance cycling challenges.
I first heard about VeloSport in Putney, South-West London by complete coincidence. I’d been cycling around Richmond Park when an elderly lady hit me with her car. My bike was written off, but the guys at the shop were brilliant in getting an insurance quote together and helping me get back on the road. While I was in the shop they talked to me about qoroz and introduced me to the brand.
When I started putting plans together for the 2014 Trans Am Bike Race, qoroz were in the back of my mind as the ideal company to partner with. I was impressed by their attention to detail and the application of precision engineering experience to bike design.
Achievements to date:
In 2010 I cycled coast to coast across the USA, covering 4,200 miles. At 19, I was acknowledged by the Adventure Cycling Association as being the youngest to ride the route solo and unsupported. During this trip I caught the endurance cycling bug and the following year I cycled 4,500 miles between Nordkapp, Northern Norway, and Tarifa, Spain. I learned loads during both of these adventures and it was almost inevitable that I’d eventually drift toward ultra-marathon cycling and adventure racing. In August 2013 I competed in the inaugural Transcontinental Race, covering the 2100 miles between London and Instanbul in 9days 16hrs and placing 4th overall.
2014 will see me take on by biggest challenge yet: competing in the inaugural Trans Am Bike Race. Departing from Astoria, OR on the 7th June, participants will cover 4,200 miles before eventually hitting the Atlantic at Yorktown, VA. Racers will compete in an unsupported style, carrying their own clothes, sleeping equipment, and bike repair kit. If something breaks, the rider alone is responsible for fixing it.
Find out more about the Trans Am Bike Race on my website.top
A little bit about Keaton..
I was born in October 1996, ride for Draecon Husqvarna on a 125cc and will ride selected British and European MX Championships this year. I previously rode for the Suzuki GB Youth Team MX for five years and was successful in the BSMA GT Cup Nationals (125cc class) last year.
I realise how important it is to train and race on custom-made machinery. If you have equipment (bikes) made to your specification, it enhances your training and performance. It also helps prevent injury from using kit not tailored to you. Having a qoroz Travel Won, set up to suit me and my style of cycling, is fantastic. The other bonus is that it packs away into its own travel case, no bigger than the bike wheels, for when we travel to races (most of the time). Because cycling is an important part of my race preparation and training programme, having a bike that packs into such a small case, that I can take with me wherever I go, is truly amazing. The crew at qoroz are very easy going and showed a real interest in me and what I'm about.
Schedule of events:
Too many to list so please follow me on my website and subscribe to my e-newsletter.top
A little bit about Ben..
I am 25 years old and I grew up in Somerset, starting my cycling life in the town of Taunton. It is an aim of mine to shift the boundaries of what is considered 'normal' and to rethink what we are capable of doing and being. As well as spending as much time as possible on my bike, I am also completing my PhD for which I am researching the attachment relationships of children living in foster care. But aside from that I have cycled across continents, reared orphaned lambs, climbed mountains around the world, pedalled a human powered aeroplane, dived with incredible creatures in the depth of the Red Sea, raced marathons around the world and most recently published a book about one of my cycling adventures.
It was through VeloSport in Putney, South-West London that I first heard about qoroz. I was soon introduced to the Westcountry team and was delighted to learn about their bespoke nature and desire to offer a complete rider experience. As well as offering a high performance bike they were also dedicated to offering the highest performance of after care and ongoing support. qoroz, to me, are far more than just a brand of bikes. I look forward to working with them on future ventures and training full time on their bikes.
Achievements to date:
LEJOGLE record - Land's End to John o'Groats and back (1900 miles) in 5 days 21 hours and 8 minutes. I enjoyed learning about the way my mind and body operates when it is completely exhausted! You can now read about it: "There and Back: Breaking the LEJOGLE record" available at www.rockettrides.com
Cycling across the USA (4000 miles). This was my second major tour and it was enlightening and exciting to live the life of a cycling nomad as I ventured across the USA from East to West. It is the main reason why I now cycle and I'd jump on any chance to do something similar again. Life by bike is just the best!
I should very much like to place at the 2012 UMCA 24 hour World Championships and this is my current motivation for training. Sometime in the future I would also like to follow in the tyre marks of James Bowthorpe and have my own global cycling adventure, but not before riding a full year of the UMCA calendar.
My ultimate aim is to get more people smiling and feeling a sense of pride and achievement through their lives, and of course, get more people on their bikes in the great outdoors.top
A little bit about Nirjala..
Nirjala Tamrakar aka "Mountain Queen" has been competing in Cross Country Mountain Biking for the last 10 years and at 32 years old and as a Professional Rider, is at the top of her sport. She is the Nepal National Female Mountain Bike Champion and since first winning in 2001 she has never been knocked off the winner's podium in Nepal! She has competed at both National and International level with wins in the UK (ENDURO 2011 Glos), India (Himachal Hercules 2009+2010), Sikkim (Kanchenjunga Race 2010), Nepal (Annual National Championships since 2001) and races in China (Asian Games 2010, Asian Championships 2011), Nepal (2008 Asian Championships), Malaysia (2008 Asian Championships).
In a very male dominated sport and a patriarchal society and the poorest 3rd World Country in S.E Asia, Nirjala has had to fight every step of the way to get to the level she is at and as such she is a National icon, a role model for empowering young women all around Nepal. She has presented Morning TV exercise programs and been filmed and interviewed in media all over Nepal, India and China. Nirjala started out 10 years ago as a Model on the catwalk and through this got into going to the gym. In the gym she stopped modeling and started to compete in body building then went on to Road Cycling where she competed in Bangaladesh (2010 S. Asian Games) and Sri Lanka (2006+8 Asian Games). It was from the terrible almost "off road" conditions of training for road biking in Nepal that she got into Mountain Biking.
Achievements to date:
Nirjala holds the record in Nepal for 1st Woman to complete the ultra endurance, "Yak Attak" around the Annapurna Circuit (5400m) and since then has gone on to win the Women's category twice (2008+2009).
She is also the first Nepalese woman to cycle the 19 day route from the capital of Tibet (Lhasa) to the Capital of Nepal (Kathmandu).
Nirjala is Nepal's only qualified Female Olympic hopeful for Mountain Biking and with her sights set on the 2012 Olympics in the UK she has a lot of work ahead of her. With final selection in early July 2012 and the games only shortly after, Nirjala has to maintain her drive and ambition all the way and with the support of qoroz and all her friends and family in the UK and around the world Nirjala, "Mountain Queen" is pushing herself ever upwards towards the peak of her career.top
Material Science, titanium frames, the unique physical properties of Ti that can be used to match the rider and the track. If it's good enough for Eddie Merckx to win the 1972 Tour De France, it's good enough for me!
Achievements to date:
Former professional rugby player of 15 years with Bristol Rugby, Newport Gwent Dragons and Exeter Chiefs.
Represented England U21, Students, 7s; Wales and A and 7s; British Lions Classics, Barbarians & Penguins.
Reformed the Bristol Rugby Community Department in 2007 and used background in rugby and education to design and develop a portfolio of sport based education programmes which have won 5 Parliamentary Awards in the past 4 years.
To ride my qoroz bike as fast as it deserves to go!
Limited through work and rugby.
Saturday 2nd June 2012, Break The Cycle 101 mile ride around the three best rugby clubs in the South West (Bristol - Bath - Gloucester)top
A little bit about James..
I'm 34, born in Somerset and now a London rat. I have a mixed background with an MA in English Literature, a couple of years working on boats, a decade making furniture and several months in between riding bikes over the Himalayas, across Russia and, most recently, around the world in 2009.
I also work for What's Driving Parkinson's? A research charity that is looking for the root causes of Parkinson's Disease.
I was introduced to qoroz by Alasdair from MSG bikes in Lancing. He's an engineer at heart so I knew that qoroz would have excellent credentials in bike design and build quality. I wasn't disappointed; qoroz have the engineering and problem solving approach to bikes that I appreciate. Its been great to get to know the team over the last months and I'm looking forward to working with them on future challenges.
Achievements to date:
I 2009 I broke the existing record for circumnavigation of the globe by 20 days. I rode over 18,000 miles in 174 days and 5 hours. Hardest thing I ever did and unrepeatable for me, not matter how much they break my time by!
Arguably more difficult (but not) was leading a group of 30 people in a groundbreaking John O'Groats to Land's End ride – not only were we riding over 120 miles a day in windy conditions, but we were feeding our cyclists on locally grown produce and local recipes all the way from End to End.
A very different ride, but just as interesting... A 24 hour ride, on rollers, in the window of Look Mum No Hands! in London. This was my first experience of riding for 24 hours and I was glad to be on the comfortable Road Won.
I want to be the among the handful of solo British riders to complete the Race Across America, a 3000 mile non-stop race across one of the most exciting countries for riding. Huge mountains, deserts and forests. This is the ultimate test of rider and bike in my opinion and I'll be taking it on using a combination of the Race Won and the Road Won so I can adapt to different terrain.
Please see my website for other projects I am working on.top
A little bit about Alistair..
From a background of outdoor pursuits, Alistair went on a trail blazing ride with Sustrans and became hooked! He is passionate about all aspects of cycling from the Velodrome to biking in the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco. He works closely with charities and in particular The Prostate Cancer Charity. Alistair lives in Devon and says he is very lucky that all of his three children still live nearby and also share his enthusiasm for bikes!
I just can't help myself from being attracted to quality, beauty and individual style" said Alistair, "need I say more, qoroz bikes have it all!
Achievements to date:
Well most of my life I've been climbing and walking up mountains, but as far as cycling is concerned last year was pretty special when I cycled around the UK coastline. It took 64 days and I didn't take a day off!
- Get more bums on saddles!
- Complete my solo challenge for 2012 – a bike and canoe journey from John O'Groats to Lands End.
- Hold a Cycle Festival for all, from those that cycle in Tweed to those that press for the best time in a sportive!
- Set up more unusual cycle challenges and tours for charity.
A little bit about Jenny..
My cycling career began when I was fairly young, competing in many cycling disciplines and later focusing on road and track events, which saw me become National Champion as a youth and junior. After sustaining regular injuries I decided to reduce my focus on racing and go to University. During this time I continued to ride cross-country mountain bikes and also began downhill mountainbiking. I took up downhilling mainly to increase my technical skills for cross-country however I ended up competing in a few races including Steve Peats Steal City Downhill event.
After returning to cross-country mountain bike racing for a while I decided to focus on endurance events. Having competed in my first 12 hour solo and 24 hour solo events this year I look forward to increasing my ability for next year!
I first discovered qoroz through the bike shop I worked in at the time (bigpeaks.com), and as a massive fan of titanium bikes I recognised their quality. After discovering they were a British company I was eager to get involved with them and become an ambassador. Having had my qoroz Mountain Won for a full season now, I couldn't be happier with it. Its not only a perfect race bike, its also great for everyday trail riding.
Achievements to date:
Having completed Mountain Mayhem several times in a team this July I competed in my first solo 12 hour event at Bontrager 24/12 in Newnham Park, Plymouth and finished 4th overall. In August I completed my first 24 hour event at Sleepless in the Saddle and finished 3rd. These two events have helped me to realise my potential within the discipline and focus on next year.
After starting racing late in the season this year I aim to complete a full season next year including the Nationl 24hr Championships. I also aim to complete Mountain Mayhem 24 hour solo (regarded as one of the hardest endurance events) and finish on the podium. I would like to secure my first solo win and be competitive in every event I do.
I have finished the season for this year. Events for next season include:
- Wiggle 6 hour solo
- Mountain Mayhem 24 hour solo
- Bontrager 24/12 24 hour solo
- Sleepless in the Saddle 24 hour solo
- National 24 hour Championships
A little bit about Maria..
Marathon Des Sables competitors and podium placed British Adventure Athlete.
Maria has competed in challenges all over the world, In 2007 she completed the Marathon Des Sables, a 151mile foot race across the Sahara Desert and came 3rd in the Three Peak Yacht Race that involved sailing, running and cycling the length of the UK. This was shortly followed by entering into the World Series circuit where she has competed in a 600km non stop race across Ireland and a 900km non stop race across Portugal by bike, foot and kayak. She has raced Vasaloppet in Sweden, a 90k cross country ski race, Karapoti, the National Mountain Biking championships in New Zealand and was chosen to represent the UK in the Land Rover G4 challenge in 2009. She has recently won the Adidas TERREX Coast to Coast event, taking the title from the previous Adventure Racing World Champions.
Because they are the best. It's really changed my experience of biking. I love the power transfer, it seems like nothing is wasted.
Achievements to date:
- 1st Team -Adidas TERREX Coast to Coast Adventure Race 2011
- 1st Female - Mumbles Duathlon 2011
- 1st Female - Gower Duathlon 2011
- Girls Bike New Zealand Expedition 2010
- 12th Female - Ironman UK 2010
- 10th Female - Karapoti National Mountain Bike Championships New Zealand 2010
- 21st Female - Speight's Coast to Coast New Zealand 2010
- 2nd Female - UK Coast to Coast 2009
- 1st Female - Land Rover G4 Challenge 2009
- 3rd Team - 3 Peaks Yacht Race 2009
- 1st Female Pair - Open 5+ Lake District 2009
- Summit of Mt Blanc 2009
- 1st Team - Ace Race Grizedale 2008
- Marathon Des Sables 2007
To do more expedition adventure racing and become world champion!
Scotland C2C - September 2011top