Pandemic Pandemonium


not just me but every bike racer. I’ve been training and am lucky to live where I do in Prescott, Arizona. My access to trails hasn’t been affected.



(Joe Lawwill was one of America’s top downhill pros before going to work at Shimano.)

We are working from home still with the exception of the warehouse team. Overall sales are up this month, so we are doing well actually. I am content working from home but am missing going to events. I see a few events on the calendar coming up and am eager to see how they go over. We are going to be quite cautious as to when we begin showing up to events. The next significant one for us that is on our calendar is Sea Otter. If these BME and NW Cups happen, I may attend one or two. Since I am working from home anyways, I have some leeway on light travel, but if I do travel, I can’t go into the office for at least two weeks, so things are still odd.



(Hans Rey is a former mountain bike trials world champion and a Mountain Bike Hall of Fame inductee.)

I definitely had to put all my travels on hold. Luckily, I had been able to attend several events already earlier this year, like the Vancouver Mountain Film Festival and the Sedona MTB Festival, and luckily I had also produced a lot of content before the lockdown. At the end of 2019 I did my trans-Hong Kong urban adventure and also photo and film projects in Tasmania and New Zealand, so I had a lot of content for the media. I was also able to create a lot of content during the lockdown from my home, like my trials course in the garden, trails behind my house, etc. It’s also an added bonus if the wife is a photographer.

On top of all that, I have a lot of archive materials from past adventures, I have been building my YouTube channel, and I started a new visual podcast series, “Hans’ Tales of Adventure,” where I tell and read the stories from my past adventures and show a lot of photos and short video clips. Needless to say, I’ve been plenty busy, and I have more ideas in the back of my head, but the cabin fever kicks in soon, and I can’t wait to go back to Europe this summer. Today I am renting an RV and will go on a road trip to Utah and Colorado.



(Richie Schley was one of the pioneers of freeride mountain biking roughly 25 years ago. He also helped with the creation of Whistler Bike Park, where the trail known as “Schleyer” was named after him.)

The COVID-19 time for me has had several waves so far. First, a lot of fear and not doing much. Some riding; most beaches were closed, so no surfing.

Then I figured out where I could ride and how to access surf, but everything was a bit more difficult to do. Some people would stay away and respect social distancing, others would bump into you on the trail and want to shake your hand.

I hosted social distancing parties in my driveway, where everyone brought their own chairs, food and beverages, but my neighbors were outraged.

I learned to cook and stay at home, improving my home a lot.

Not being able to travel has been a bit challenging, because I have a lot of friends in different places, and they have become close, longtime friends. The lack of new interesting environments has made it challenging to stay motivated to create good content. Not being at events has made sponsors put pressure on me to create more content.

In the end, my activities—riding, surfing and hiking—have not changed much at all, but the lack of travel has saddened [me].

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brian lopesChloe WoodruffHans Reyhow to'sJOE LAWWILLPandemicRichie Schleytraining tips