INTERVIEW: VITUS FIRST TRACKS RIDER, JACK DEVLIN
Say hello to Jack Devlin, a man passionate about music and bikes. When he's not writing his own songs or playing at venues across Ireland, he's racing and riding his Sommet CRX at warp speed. Talking beats and bikes we get to know this EWS, Vitus First Tracks Enduro Cup, and Gravity Enduro competitor and what makes him tick.
What’s your favourite cycling memory?
My favourite cycling memory has got to be getting stuck in Whistler and riding bikes every day living off my busking money and competing in the Enduro World Series. Whistler is such a mecca for the sport and I loved every second I was there.
As a kid, who was your cycling icon?
Got to be the man himself Sam Hill, what a legend! I suppose as a kid I was into any wildness, I loved James Stewart and Justin Barca from the Moto scene.
When out on your bike, what’s your three essentials?
Hmm... it used to be more about the craic (fun) and worry about the problems after, old Jack would have said "my bike and two wheels". Now though after being caught out, I would say spare Tube, Multi-tool, and my phone for the tunes if I’m on a solo mission.
If you had to pick one place to go cycling in the world, where would it be and why?
I would have to say Whistler just because it has soo much verity and an awesome vibe. As soon as I left the last time, I wanted to go straight back and along with other trips, it's given me a thirst to travel more. Would be cool to go somewhere like Asia to ride, some undiscovered gem.
Favourite local trail and why?
Mmm there's too many good ones and I'm very lucky to have that. I’m going to say Magic Carpet Rostrevor just because it’s good to blast down something that’s totally awesome to the bottom for 5 min. Kelan’s trail beside is definitely on a similar level pretty rowdy at the bottom though!
What do you think the future holds for cycling – where do you think it’s going – how do you see it developing?
Obviously, Social Media is taking over big time so I’d imagine it’s going to be more and more based on the simple quick forms of consumerism like Instagram. I think racing will always have its place but I think it’s maybe a case of the very top competitors will get more out of the sport, but anyone below is being more filtered out, and that in turn makes it harder for anyone below that standard to keep up. It's a bit like F1 especially in Downhills' case, I think there’s a little more room for independent/privateer riders which is cool, I hope it stays like that.
Who got you into cycling – athlete,parents,friends,sibling?
My Uncle Paddy got me into the groove. I was doing a little bit of motocross and he had just moved to Whistler and said about Mountain Biking which I suppose I was already kind of doing, hitting jumps and building things in the woods. Then they 'done up' Rostrevor and I got into it properly from there. My first race was The World Police and Fire games in 2013 I think.
What Vitus bikes do you currently ride?
Sommet CRX 27.5 and I absolutely love it, it's an amazing rig! I’ve been on the Sommet a good few years, always been confident with the setup and it’s been really cool to see the development of the bike over the years too, Vitus is absolutely smashing it!
What’s your go-to music for riding / who’s on your riding playlist?
Depends on the day, if I need a bit of enthusiasm, I’d go for some Rage Against the Machine, Kings of Leon, Nothing But Thieves, and maybe even some Linkin Park. On the days I need to get loose and the sun is out, I’d get a bit of Funky stuff on like RHCP, Alabama Shakes, Tom Misc and stuff.
What’s your go-to post-ride meal?
Get me some spaghetti and meatballs!
Any tips for riders just getting into cycling?
Firstly Keep it fun and respect the places your riding. Enjoy the moment and create memories whether your on a solo ride or with friends or loved ones.
When not out on your bike what other forms of exercise do you like doing?
I love keeping fit and it reflects in my riding, big time. I like gym work circuits, lifting all that stuff, and lately been doing a lot of swimming which is great cardio but you just can't knock getting out to rip the bike!