181 – World Cup Downhill Racing with Calum McBain

181 – World Cup Downhill Racing with Calum McBain

Today’s Guest:

Elite Downhill & Enduro Racer, Calum McBain

On episode #181 we are chatting with Calum McBain about taking his racing to the next level, racing in the Enduro World Series, following his love for steep fast descents on the World Cup Downhill Series, being Scottish Champion and funding the privateer lifestyle.

Calum is a busy young man, he works full time designing and building trails and as you can imagine this is not the easiest of jobs, shovelling, moving dirt, and you never seem to have a wheelbarrow out of your hands. If you have ever helped on trail maintenance days at your local you will understand what I mean. On top of this Calum is training in the gym, on his bike and whenever he gets a spare minute with any energy left in the tank to follow his dream, race and be competitive in the EWS and Downhill World Cups.

It takes a massive amount of dedication, passion and determination to follow this path, it is not without its sacrifices, but it is something almost every privateer racer is willing to do to follow their dreams and race at the best of their ability, on the world stage and against the worlds best.

However, this cannot be done alone. Sponsors, support and a kind push on the back all come into play, and play a huge part in the outcome of success or failure.

We chat to Calum about his road to success, how sponsors have helped and what his new team signing means to his 2021 race season goals, plus lots more!

Thanks for being here. Enjoy the show.

Find Out:

  • How Calum was racing moto x from a very early age
  • Why he swapped moto x for mountain biking
  • What the scene was like when he was growing up
  • How his friends played a large role on him mountain biking
  • Why Calum prefers downhill to enduro
  • How he saved for his first bike
  • Why Calum is so hooked on racing
  • Why he believes after a 3rd place in 2017 he has been mostly on podiums ever since
  • How Calum felt after getting a call to join the first Scottish downhill team
  • His thoughts on team support
  • How Calum felt after being the first racer to be funded by The DirtFund Project
  • Where and how he spent his £1000 funding
  • Calum’s 2021 race goals
  • How to get in contact and find out more

I find it fascinating that athletes of all types and shapes can compete for a number of years and just never find their way to a podium place. Now, I know how extremely difficult this can be, every competitor is reaching for the same goal, the same result, to be standing on that podium and let’s face it some athletes just work harder or have had some form of advantage than others.

But every now and then something interesting happens, after placing mostly in the double digits they get a 2nd or 3rd place and all of a sudden they are standing on the podium at every event. Why is this, what has happened to suddenly be placing among the top few competitors at every event? Is it a change of diet, training, coach, mindset, confidence…what makes this huge leap forward?

After looking at Calums results he has done something very similar. After placing 3rd at the 2017 HDBC BDS #2 in Fort William, Calum has been constantly hitting podium places at most events. We chat about why he thinks this is and how things have changed for him after this event. When scanning over Calum’s results there is no doubt he is fast, skilled and consistent, it was only a matter of time before he got picked up by a team and got the race support he deserves.

When Calum got the call from the team owner he was super stoked, and to be part of the first ever Scottish downhill team just makes it that little bit more special. Calum knows how much having the support of a race mechanic and everything else that a team brings, from team mates to travel buddies will help him become a faster more skilled rider, and for the other racers out there that is something to fear. The young man is fast and will only get faster.

So join us for an hour as we chat about racing at an elite level, how Covid helped land the dream job, how it felt breaking both wrists at the same time and Calum’s goals for the 2021 race season.

Thanks for being part of the podcast. Enjoy the episode!

To Connect with Calum:

Instagram: mcbainer_

Race Team & Sponsors:



The DirtFund Project

Resources in this Episode:




Yeti Trail Builders


To Share Your Thoughts or Get In Contact:

  • Share this show on, Instagram or Facebook
  • Leave a note in the ‘Contact Us’ section on the website

To Help Out The Show:

Thanks to Calum for coming on the show and sharing his story.

And thank you once again for tuning inYou are all great!

Join me next week for another MTB TRIBE Podcast show!