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All the ‘Interviews’ Archives

Webmaster Profile: Frank Chastel

July 12, 2012 By: Julien TZ Section: Interviews

Frank Chastel (alias Franky, right) and Sergio the speaker (left)

With a strong regional accent (from Marseille), sporting fuzzy hair and a bulky camera lens, Frank Chastel, alias Franky is one of the unmissable characters of pretty much any UCI trials riding event. He is the man behind Trial Inside – www.trial-inside.com – and was the publisher of what was the first magazine entirely dedicated to bike trials riding (6 issues a year from September 2009 to September 2011). Jumping on the other side of the fence, he kindly accepted to take the interviewee seat and share his views on the trials riding scene. Excerpts…

Hi Franky, starting from scratch, what drove you into the bike trials scene?

It is in 1999 that I came across trials riders for the first time. I was just strolling in Marseille, when I saw two guys riding their bikes in a funny but impressive way in the Prado area. These guys, around 13 and 14 years old, happened to be the young Coustellier brothers. At the time I was only acquainted to motor trials, as a regular spectator of the indoor events in Marseille, but the ability and balance of these guys just blew my mind. I congratulated them as would do many passers-by. My other hobbies included football, always supporting the OM, and car racing video games. In fact, I was so much into video games that I used to run a small racing journal for a group of friends, commenting on the races and detailing our rankings in the video games. Among that group of friends, someone asked me if I could report on actual Formula 1 races, following in particular the ascending French pilot Stéphane Sarrazin for whom I would act as press officer while providing content for his website – www.stephane-sarrazin.com .

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Manufacturer Profile: Christian Gugliotta

March 24, 2011 By: Julien TZ Section: Interviews, Manufacturers

Christian Gugliotta is Atomz’ products manager at Sunn Bicycle and is one of the few trials bike manufacturers to be largely distributed through real bike shops, thanks to Sunn’s large network of bicycle resellers.

What is your background and what drove you into the bike trials scene?

Christian Gugliotta: For as long as I can remember, I have always been riding bikes. But I really got into mountain biking at 12 when the sport was becoming popular. I had my first mountain bike in 1991 and did my first XC-race the same year in 1993, I had a co-factory sponsorship from Sunn. I discovered bike trials around that time at a demo organized by Stéphane Ceccarelli in Aix-en-Provence (who sometimes contributes to Trials Inside as a photographer). He was a true inspiration for me and also the organizer of the first regional bike trials championships in Provence (South of France) from 1994 to 1997.  This is also when I started competing in bike trials, on modified mountain bikes from Sunn. From 1998 to 1999, I rode on custom bikes built by Vincent Lafaye, based on my specifications. Then I was sponsored by a local bike manufacturer, Explosiv, before I decided again to build my own bikes. Between 2000 and 2003, I was among the top 10 UCI riders, I came to finish 7th at a World Cup event.

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Reseller Profile: Adam Read

December 08, 2010 By: Julien TZ Section: Biketrials Resellers, Interviews

Adam Read is the founder and owner of TartyBikes.co.uk, a remarkably efficient online shop specialized in bike trials components.

When did you start riding trials?

Another indestructible wheel shipping soon!

It was around 1999, I think. A new guy started at school, I went riding with him and he bunny hopped up a 50cm wall. I was amazed and wanted to ride trials ever since!

What Adam’s bike looked like back in the days.

Can you describe the first bike on which you rode trials? (more…)

Rider Profile: Kenny Belaey

November 01, 2010 By: Julien TZ Section: Interviews, Rider interview

When did you start riding trials and how did you get into bike trials?
I started when I was 9 (1992), our dad was a good motor-trials rider and we always joined him on the races. Shortly after, my brother and I got a bike, so that’s how it all started for me. When my father saw that Wesley and myself were talented enough, he sold all his gear to drive us around at competitions.

Can you describe the first bike on which you rode trials?
It was a T19 Montesa: rusty rims, welded handlebars, old tyres and a plastic bashguard… Thinking about it gives me goozebumps… Great times

What bike evolution has had the biggest impact on your riding?
Raising the bottom bracket was a good innovative way to change our riding style, not only because we had more play between the bash and the obstacle, also because we started to jump higher and it gave a more stable feeling balancing on the back wheel. The weight of the bikes, going from 10kg or more four years ago to 8kg today, also makes a huge difference.

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