We found pro rider Rowan Sorrell shredding Algarve’s finest trails last December and we make a little interview. See what Rowan answered to Allmountain Addict’s questions below.
1. Who are you? Where are you from? How old are you? What do you do for a living?
Rowan Sorrell, from Wales UK, 31 yrs old and I design and build trails for a living and ride for my sponsors as much as I can when I get the time!!
2. What are your local trails?
We have lots of trail centres nearby such as Cwmcarn, the Forest of Dean and Brechfa Forest but mainly we like to build our own steep and loamy trails in the woods.
3. We know that you have a big experience in competition, tell us about your racing history?
I raced on the World cup DH circuit from 2004 to 2009, I stopped in 09 as I had a big smash and damaged the nerves in my shoulder, I took the time out to heal and build up my business, I still love racing my bike whenever I can and have turned to more unique and fun events, I like to experience new places and thing on my bike.
4. What events are you doing this year (2012)?
In 2012 I am doing the Saas Fee Glacier race, hopefully the red bull trail fox, The Jamaica Fat Tyre Festival and some enduro’s in Ireland, UK, France and Italy and perhaps one in Portugal?!
5. What do you think about the enduro races in Europe (overall)? What needs to be changed (if any)?
I think the French and Italian enduro races have it pretty much spot on, I really like the format, good technical riding and lots of it. The UK should have more technical trails, the trail centres are fun but for racing they are not technical enough.
6. What was/is your favorite race?
Tough one to call as I have many, I loved the Trans Provence last year though, it has a bit of everything – it is so much more than just a race, so I think that is one of my highlights for sure.
7. The Urge event had a big impact in Portuguese mountain bike community because Cabo Verde was a Portuguese colony, tells about the experience in the Urge Cabo Verde event?
What a place, Cabo Verde is a stunning country, the trails were truly crazy at times, the crew on the trip was tight and the local people were very warm and friendly, I’ll remember the event for a long long time and racing down the volcano was unreal.
8. Your company is well known because of Trail Centers and is a great promoter for trails of Allmountain and Enduro. Can you tell us future projects in the Back on Track?
This next year is very exciting for us, while I can’t give you the exact details at the moment as it is still secret, you should be hearing plenty from the Back on Track team this year as we will be busy building away both on home soil and abroad.
9. How is the Enduro/allmountain scene the UK?
For riding it is huge – people love to go out on a long ride, hit a few climbs and ride some steep Dh style trails on the all mountain bikes, I’d say it is what the majority of people I know do. The race scene is still quite small and developing but I think the next two years will see it grow bigger and bigger.
10. Your recent visit to Portugal you had the chance to ride some trails in Monchique (Algarve). Tell us about that experience...
It was a blast, riding in December in a T shirt and shorts on dusty trails just doesn’t happen in the UK so it was good to head out and do some runs on the trails in the Algarve. I think the tracks are pretty mint and it’s a great place for a break in the UK winter, hopefully it will continue to grow down there with more trails being added and the scene developing.
11. Do you know or have heard about trails (places) in Portugal?
Yes I know of Sintra and Lousã, they are both on my radar, I’ll be heading there next winter for some good times. I’ve raced Gouveia a few times and heard that Guimarães fun too, I think Portugal is recognized by the UK downhillers as a good place to hang out, with good trails and a friendly local riders who are good to hang out with.
12. Having in mind your recent riding in Portugal, would you like to do come back in the coming future?
See above, I think 2012 will see me back in Portugal; for sure!
Thanks Rowan, see you in the trails, preferentially in Portugal!