World-class DH veteran and 2012 UK Gravity Enduro Champion, Neil Donoghue, is frothing at the mouth for this season of racing. Continuing with enduro based riding and looking to defend his UK Gravity Enduro title, Neil sets out to achieve some big personal goals and reach new heights with the all new World Enduro Series kicking off shortly. But its not all about racing, winning and competing for Neil; most of the time he just likes to get out on his bike... and just have a mess around!
I caught up with Neil recently so he could shed some light on his non-racer side, and we headed to his local woods in Shrewsbury, UK, for some good ol' fashioned trail bashing. Equipped with his brand new 650B Santa Cruz Bronson C, he was to set a new level for the "take it easy maiden voyage", as he thrashed the bats out of it. Local riding for Neil is really all about the grassroots, and having grown up in the area, he knows these woods like the back of his hand. Neil has done it all here, so it was great to head back, feet first, to scope out a few new lines and see if the Bronson has what it takes!
At first glance, you can't deny that the Bronson has all the lines, with the geometry to match; the numbers seems to just add up on this one. Have Santa Cruz hit the money with this 650B? This is very much a classy ride with a fiery attitude!
But for Neil, this is all just playing in the woods. Going out and doing what he loves most, riding bikes!
With a full race calendar this year, along with his personal training programme to keep him up to speed, you can imagine he is a busy man, juggling bikes, relationships, moving house and the rest! But somehow, Neil has managed to find the time to do his bit for the cause and is partaking in one of the biggest fundraisers of his life. Neil and a team of fellow riders, led by Tim Morris, plan to ride from John o' Groats to Land's End for Cancer Research UK! 1000 gruelling miles across the British countryside over 9 days, all for a great cause.
If you are keen to get involved and help support the team, then please visit their John o' Groats to Land's End for Cancer Research UK
page here, and help them give it some beans!
Photography & Videography: Laurence Crossman-Emms