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Not A Gravel Ride - Three Days on the Goldfields Track with Richard Stubbins

Santini and Richard discuss a recent cycling trip including essentials needed and how Santini’s gravel range performed. Richard also shares his future ideas for cycling trips.



SANTINI:

Hi Richard, thanks for taking the time to chat! Can you tell us a little bit about your cycling background?  

RICHARD:

I rode my bike all the time when I was younger.  My friends and I were always pushing our limits riding as far from home as we could. In my 20’s I got into downhill mountain biking in the Canadian Rockies before moving to Australia to have my two kids.  After divorcing in 2014, I bought a road bike to ride with my best mate Scott. Then I wanted to visit Taiwan to cycle with my brother, Shane, and I trained with Jack Thompson of Western Australia for 18 months to build my fitness.  

SANTINI:

You’ve recently escaped Melbourne with a few mates for an off-road adventure. Can you tell us how it went?  

RICHARD:

Yes, we spent three days riding the Goldfields Track from Mt Buninyong, south east of Ballarat, to Bendigo. The ride was really tough, but great. Even though we rode the first two days in the rain. We rode from home to the train station, trained to the city, then a coach to Ballarat.   

SANTINI:

What are the essentials you need to have for off-road riding?

RICHARD:

Well, firstly, Goldfields Track is, not, a gravel ride.  It’s a mountain bike trail, but I’ve built up my 2021 Specialised Diverge to be like a rigid mountain bike with drop bars. So, definitely some wide 650b or 29” wheels and some warm gear.  

SANTINI:

Our new gravel collection has just landed, how did it go on this ride?  

RICHARD:

The long sleeve jerseys were warm and comfortable.  I’m in love with the gravel bibs.  They’re my favourite bibs I’ve ever worn.  It was a bit too wet for the windbreaker to keep my dry, but it did do it’s job to stop the wind and keep me warm.  I really like how the jacket and vest have rear pockets to fold themself into to help stow easily and they also have two way zippers to zip up to help cool off while climbing.  

SANTINI:

What would be your ultimate cycling adventure?

RICHARD:

I’d really like to get over to Taiwan to ride with my brother, but I have a couple of other ideas floating around my brain. One involving a tour of the West Coast of the US & Canada and another around Europe. In today’s climate though, I’m focusing on trips around Victoria to hone my bike packing and planning skills.  

SANTINI:

Finally, what are a few of your cycling goals for 2021 and beyond?  

RICHARD:

2021 is about more multi day trips.  Using my available weekends and school holidays to explore and adventure.

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