Spoke Magazine

Frankly Thursday – Kai Crow

Posted by johnoldale on Thursday December 15 2011

Kai Crow is one half of NZRide, one half of the Kai and Byron Scott show (relationship) and half the size of me. Doesn’t matter what the conditions are, Kai strictly runs slicks on his bike, perhaps that’s why he’s featured in the Earthed 3 crash section. With a season racing Euro World Cups under his belt, you can guarantee that Kai will be on the trail in front of you.

How old are you?

Not as old as my hairline would suggest

Where do you live?

Auckland

What do you like best about living where you do?

The work opportunities I’ve had living here, the people I’ve met and the fact that there’s always something to do.

What do you dislike about living where you do?

Having to sit for hours in traffic to go for a ride after work, or alternatively, don Lycra and brave crowded streets and angry drivers just for the sake of doing some riding.

How did you get involved in the mountain bike scene to begin with, and how long ago was that?

I bought my first mountain bike when I was about 11 years old I think it was, which would have been ’92. I saved up for what seemed like 10 years and bought a 10 speed Raleigh mountain bike for the princely sum of $320. And it was rad because it had cantilever brakes, they were the height of technology.

 What’s your ‘day’ job? What does it involve?

I think most people imagine I run nzride.com all day but what I actually do is run the marketing department for Sonar6, a software company founded in New Zealand that sells online HR software around the world.
What are five benefits of working with bikes all day every day?

-   Being able to hook your mates up with cheap deals

-   Being able to hook yourself up with cheap deals

-   Doing cool stuff like flying hundreds of miles to ride a new trail and claiming it as a business expense

-   The fact that nobody from IRD rides bikes so they’re not going to see that last point

-   Being able to hook yourself up with cheap deals

How would you describe your riding style?

Hmmmm I’d say something like Bubba Stewart meets Tinkerbell

 Favourite trail?

Schladming, Austria

What’s one thing you’ve learned in the last 10 years?

Mountain biking is a really expensive hobby. REALLY.

What’s wrong with mountain biking?

-   The association with Lycra

-   Lack of TV coverage (see point 1)

-   It’s not as cool to tell people you do mountain biking as it is to tell people you do Moto-X (see point 1)

Three things right with mountain biking?

-          It’s way cooler to tell people you do mountain biking than roller skating

-          It’s given me a chance to meet some of the coolest people I’ve met in my life, made a lot of life-long friends and been to some pretty cool places around the world.

-          Number one for me: I think of any high(ish) speed vehicle assisted sport; in mountain biking you can hold it closer to the limit of control than any other because the penalities for failure are just that bit lower than motor sports etc. It means you can push it that much closer to the edge of your abilities when it comes to a race or just a good run in the weekend.

Top two mountain bike developments in the last 10 years (bike park, part or whatever)?

-          Freecaster TV

-          In New Zealand, I’d have to say the Queenstown Gondola Bike Park – that facility is going to change the face of riding nationally and New Zealand’s reputation as a mountain bike destination internationally.

 All time favourite rider?

Got to be Cedric Gracia – the sport needs those larger than life characters. He’s got that psuedo rockstar image but at the same time, he’s the most friendly approachable guy on the scene.

 Top five favourite bits of mountain bike kit?

-          My flat pedals and some Five Tens

-          A Troy Lee D2 – I don’t know if anyone should be able to wear any other full-face helmet – they just don’t look right.

-          My Pro-Rider full face from 1999 – because I still have it somewhere and oh-my-god-I-can’t-believe-I-ever-wore-that!

-          My nzride.com race top – because I still think it’s cool!

-          A neck brace – I don’t actually own one because I’m not hardcore enough anymore but it’s such a good piece of equipment I don’t think anyone racing downhill should be without one!

Who do you look up to?

I admire anyone who makes it at the top level in the sport and particularly those who make it really big and don’t let it go to their head (which I have to say is just about everyone who has made it big in the sport).

What are your vices?

Spending stupid amounts of money on toys.

I just love Lycra

Finish this sentence: “On a Saturday I like to get up and….”

10 years ago: Do skids on my neighbour’s veggie garden then tear off and go out for a ride

Now: Water my veggie garden then putt off in my Fiat Uno to go out for a ride.

Image Gallery (3 Photos)

  • http://www.facebook.com/kaicrow Kai Crow

    It was Earthed FOUR thank you John, and I’ll have you know I was also featured in the How to Corner section in the DVD extras

    …as an example of how NOT to corner