201 – First Downhill World Cup Experience with Niall Clerkin
Downhill & Enduro Racer, Rostrevor Local & A Name To Watch For In The Future – Niall Clerkin
On episode #201 we are chatting with a young ripper from Rostrevor called Niall Clerkin. We chat to Niall about his mountain bike background, how he got into racing, his first World Cup experience (which involved his bike getting stolen), how he enjoyed a month on the road racing, how he got funded by The Dirtfund Project to help further this racing pursuits and why he wants to turn racing into his full time career, plus much more!
Thanks for being here & Enjoy the show!
- How Niall got interested in mountain biking
- What it was like growing up with Rostrevor on your doorstep
- Why Niall got into Downhill and not enduro
- Why Niall now races in both disciplines
- What he loves so much about downhill
- His first race experience
- Why in 2018/ 2019 Niall started to be standing on most podiums
- His first impressions of the World Cup circuit
- How he got his bike stolen at Leogang
- What Niall thinks of the World Cup trails & how they differ from Irish trails
- How he got on at the World Cup
- How Niall got help funding his trip by The Dirtfund Project
- Why Niall wants to turn mountain biking into his full time career
- The plans he has to make this happen
- How to get in contact with Niall and find out more
In 2019 Niall decided he wanted to up his game. He was coming off a great 2018 race season with several great results, including two 3rds, two 2nds and a 1st. So after this inspiring season in 2019 Niall got to work to make this a common thing, he wanted to be standing on more podiums. He concentrated on getting into the gym, working out, getting more bike time and pushing to get to the top. All his hard work paid off over the 2019 & 2020 season with seven 1st place results, three 2nds and a 3rd.
However, that was not the complete plan. Niall had decided he wanted to test his skills on the bigger stage and compete in the World Cup series. Niall and his father had originally planned this for the 2020 season, but we know how that all turned out. So instead they rescheduled for the 2021 season and decided to stay on the road for two months and attend the UCI in Leogang, Crankworx in Innsbruck, the iXS in Brandnertal and the UCI in Les Gets.
Overall Niall did really well, he maybe didn’t get the results he was looking for, but he gained a tonne of experience, loved the bigger stage and learned what it is like to compete at that higher level. The biggest takeaway in my mind is that it has really inspired Niall, he knows this is something he wants to do as a full time career and knows what he has to do to get there. It will not be easy, but if you can come away from your first World Cup experience and be super stoked to do what it takes, have the correct mindset and be prepared to work for it, that is a very good sign for the future.
So join us as we chat about stolen bikes, racing super step trails, massive river gaps, The Dirtfund Project and future plans, plus lots more.
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Thanks to Niall for coming on the show and sharing his story.
And thank you once again for tuning in!
Join me next week for another MTB TRIBE Podcast show!