Co-Investigator, University of Cardiff
I was 5 when I started riding a bicycle, and I kid you not, it was a clapped out old thing with solid wheels! Yes they had invented the pneumatic tyre in 1978 but I didn’t have them on whatever hand me down I learnt on; it had metal rims with wooden and rubber tyres!
Once I could ride I rode all the time – for my 6th birthday I remember getting an analogue speedo and just riding round and round the block of garages on our estate to watch the miles go up on it.
Cycling has been a primary form of enjoyment and socialising for me. There are only a few years when I didn’t really cycle (between the ages of 17 and 20 when I had a motorbike) and it has always been for enjoyment whether that is getting to work, road racing or mountain biking.
My best memory of cycling goes back to 2003 when I went out to visit Mt Ventoux in Provence. Having ridden the mountain a few times already that week I went up it from Bedoin on a Tour de France rest day when there were hundreds of other people riding it. I must have learnt something because I overtook them all and when I got to the top I felt so fresh I descended the final 6km back to Chalet Reynard and went back up again! It was the only time before or since that I’ve ever felt like a cyclist. It’s either that or watching my daughter Amy go straight from her balance bike to riding with no stabilisers on her 4th birthday.
I currently get out on either a mountain bike or road bike once a week if I’m lucky but despite the lack of riding I still help keep the cycling economy afloat with the relentless buying of (largely superfluous) stuff. My other interests include writing and performing music, reading, watching films and exploring the world when I get a chance.
External Profile: http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/cplan/about-us/staff/justin-spinney