Q: Tell us about yourself (What sports you do, when did you start, how did you get into it?)
My name is Tyler, I am 27 years young and I am a multi-discipline MTB Rider & Racer. I ride a wide variety of trails and events, from Cross Country to Marathon events, and 24hr Endurance to Gravity Enduro.
I really only began to pick up riding in early 2014 after a colleague, who was right into it, talked me into coming for a ride one weekend. Well shortly after that I purchased my first proper Mountain Bike, I guess you could say I was hooked! Only a month or so after this I decided that I would enter my first race, a 5-hour Cross Country….oh boy I was not prepared for that, I was forced to retire from the race believe it or not due to severe Cramps!
This knocked my confidence around a little and I did not return to racing until only recently.
Q: What do you love the most about mountain biking?
What I love most about Mountain Biking more than Mountain Biking itself would have to be clarity and cleansing effect it has on my mind, yes that probably sounds silly, but when you are hurtling down rock drops and have trees whizzing by your mind is free. You aren’t thinking about anything, it’s just you, your bike and the surreal journey you are on.
Oh and the Banter with mates is pretty good as well 😂.
Q: When and what was your first ever major event you competed in?
My first Major event was probably the JetBlack 24hr Cross Country Race held in Rydal early in 2019. After a hiatus from racing while I focused on increasing fitness, I decided it would be a great idea to torture myself with 24hrs of blood, sweat, and tears.
To walk away with a 3rd place finish was unreal, and is what spurred me on for the rest of the year.
Q: What does your training look like and how often do you train?
I train every day, well that is I try to be as consistent as possible, but that’s not always the case with a young family, running a business and also working for Fire & Rescue NSW.
My training however, consists of a ride every second day (mix of power, interval & endurance sessions), a mobility/strength/functional gym session on the alternate days, a 5km swim at least once a week and if I have some spare time a little rock climbing or kayaking doesn’t go astray.
Q: What do you do before an event to prepare yourself?
BEETROOT, yes that’s right Beetroot. I will have a whole beetroot or a glass of pure beetroot juice in the hours leading up to the race.
I don’t really do anything too crazy or out there, but I am lucky enough to have the great support of the Team over at Peak MTB Gym Program to ensure I have the right Mobility Session dialed in leading up to an Event.
Maybe I’m a little superstitious haha, as I jump on the bike it’s always left glove on before the right
Q: What are your best tips for mountain biking (general and/or event related)?
The number one tip I can offer is to just get out there and go ride your bike! Don’t be afraid to try new things, tackle new obstacles, push the boundaries. The human spirit is like an elastic band. The more you stretch, the greater the capacity.
Well that, and proper Bike set up. Take the time to ensure the bike is comfortable and set up for You.
Q: What was your biggest learning curve mountain biking?
My biggest learning curve was to trust the bike, to work with it, to stay light and loose and let the bike move around beneath you naturally, not to tense up and fight the bike when things got a little hairy. The difference was night and day and brought with it the confidence to tackle obstacles harder and faster than ever before.
Q: What was your favourite event and why?
My favorite event is the RockyTrail JetBlack 24hr. The 24hr was actually one of my first XC (cross country) events, and what a way to find out if you like XC. Talk about jumping straight in the deep end. Early in the race, it’s great fun, you’re in a good groove, laughing with your mates and loving every moment…then the twilight hours roll around and it becomes a heck of a grueling struggle, the fatigue and cramps begin to set in (if it weren’t for CrampFix, I don’t think I honestly could have finished) you begin to swear to yourself that you will never do another one. Once the event is all over, you simply cannot wait to do it all over again next year!
Q: If you could compete in any event in the world, what would it be?
If I could compete in any event, it most certainly would have to be the Megavalanche. The ‘Mega’ as it’s know is a Downhill Marathon event that takes place annually at the Alpe D’Huez ski resort in the French Alps. It is the longest and craziest event of its kind and sees a mass start of over 2000 riders descend 2600mtrs over a 20km course from high on the Glacier to Allemont the town below.
If you want to find more of Tyler, you can find him on Instagram @tylergauci