The Privateer: Do You Need to Race to Be a Pro Mountain Biker?

Oct 31, 2019
by Pinkbike Originals  


THE PRIVATEER

SEASON 2


Adam heads out on a ride with Remy Metailler to talk about other ways of making it as a pro mountain biker outside of racing. After that he joins up with Ben Haggar from SORCA to learn more about what goes into the trail building around Squamish.


PREVIOUSLY
Did you miss the previous episodes from Season 2 of The Privateer? Want to know more about Adam Price's 2019 journey? Here's the full Privateer playlist.




We'd like to extend a big thank you to all of the sponsors who will be supporting Adam this year.

Adam Price is trained by Todd Schumlick @performx_training

Special thanks to SORCA.

Special thanks to GoPro.



119 Comments

  • 105 1
 As soon as one's hobby needs to be pursued for income's sake, it often detracts from the enjoyment potential of that hobby.

There's something to the idea of not being paid to mountain bike, and making your money elsewhere (and you'll probably make more money elsewhere). But what do I know, I'm not being paid to mountain bike.
  • 56 2
 I used to work in the bike industry and quickly began to dislike bikes as a result.
  • 24 1
 the EXACT reason I left bike mechanic jobs, after working on bikes all day an putting up with (some) customers an distros. The LAST thing I wanted to do go ride my own bike
  • 12 0
 The truth! It's exactly what killed my passion for cars.
  • 10 1
 In the past I would pour all money into mountain biking to be able to ride, race, travel to races and so on. In some sense I was more commited than a pro, because in between training and riding I had to go out and make money.
  • 32 1
 Racing killed all riding for me. I used to love riding my TT bike as well as my mountain bike. I got quite fast as well. I could easily hit a 60 minute 40k on the Cervelo and I saw benefits when riding trails as I had the power to grind. So, I decided to start and take it more seriously. Training regime, diet, monitoring HR zones, etc... Entered some races and placed well within my category. Then, I started to hate riding. The sensation and joy of going fast and being able to power down was still there but the racing was ruining it for me. Everything became reasoned and planned. Every ride was done as a part of a greater whole. I ended up trading that Cervelo for a Litespeed road bike thinking that that would help. It did not. The joy was removed from riding. All riding. I stopped for about 5 years. I have only recently started riding mountain and road again and I absolutely love it. Taking the break helped me rediscover what being competitive and racing ruined. I have a new Devinci that I love riding and regularly am back out on the road bike. I am going to buy another TT bike, hopefully soon, and start riding it again. I see enduro stuff and think about getting back into the race thing again. I then remember that it killed the entire activity for me and snap out of it.
  • 10 2
 Agreed, used to be a big time gamer, but as I have gained years of tenure in the IT field, the less and less I want to game. I don't even own a gaming PC anymore.
  • 7 0
 @jmhills: I couldn't agree more. I went through a racing phase and it sucked the life and fun out of riding. When you ride because you feel you have too, rather than wanting to, it takes on a new experience. Fortunately, I didn't quit riding, I just quit racing. In reality, even at my peak, I wasnt that fast.

I think going to remote locations to shoot a video would be fun, but racing at an elite level in EWS or world cup racing is a job and a grind.
  • 15 0
 @jmhills: It really depends on your outlook on racing. Where I live, they have this real grassroots race series called the Island Cup. 8 or 9 Enduro races through the season at all the awesome riding areas up and down the island (Vancouver Island, BC). Started racing last year, did 4 races and then did 8 races this year. Stated doing it originally to scratch that competitive itch I always have no matter what I'm doing... but I met a bunch of great people, the vibe is really chill and these races are far more about the "good times" than placement. I and our little crew of dudes and dudettes, continue to race these races more because they've become really fun, fast group rides where we get to meet awesome like minded people or see and reconnect with friends we tend to only see at these races and we're forced to explore more of the great riding areas around us with pre-rides and races that maybe we would never have bothered to ride. Don't get me wrong, we're still all trying hard and there's little inter-friends rivalries going on... but it's still always more about the fun and the post ride beers and stories about who f*cked up where vs what our stage times were. We're also a bit older and have adopted the #DadRacing mentality. I intentionally go out to these races with the mindset to just have fun... and this kind of racing is fun... so I end up having a lot of fun... haha
  • 3 0
 I think it depends on your attitude. I can understand those who say that turning an hobby into a job is the worst thing to do, but there are some people who have a "racing" mindset and they enjoy training, taking setup notes, plan the rides and focus on every aspect of the performance in order to improve.
For those people competition is part of their life and not rarely they stop doing a sport as soon as they stop to compete because "just riding" is pointless to them.
So the question is not about racing but about being paid to do something which means you have responsibilities towards your boss, sponsors etc. and you can not refuse to ride (or race) just because you don't like the track, weather, food...
  • 5 0
 I once was lucky enough to ride for a living doing trial demo's. At beginning of my contract I felt like the luckiest SOB alive, I finally turned my hobby into my livelihood. All of the sudden, you find yourself riding your bike at times you don't feel like riding at all and your hobby quickly becomes your job. There was also no Ying and Yang anymore in my life as I called it, I didn't have anything anymore to look forward to after a day's work or school. Today I ride my bike for fun and I never felt more happy riding my bike at 40 for a hobby. I truly appreciate it a whole lot more now then 20 years ago.
  • 2 0
 For me it started as a hobby (for 20 years). 10 years ago by coincidence it tuned into a full time job where I can ride my job and build trails for a living. I have not looked back but sometimes I must admit I need to pay attention to the hobby part of it to keep it alive. That's when I'm building backyard trails or enjoy epic adventures like Trans Provence, Off Road Finnmark or just riding trails with friends or kids.
  • 10 0
 @gnarnaimo: and porn
  • 2 0
 I have only done a few fun bike races locally but I hated them - I dont really even like riding with other people. I did love running races though - I think I was better on my feet than on two wheels and put in some good times and was improving until my back gave up.
  • 2 0
 @islandforlife: There are some great events around here. Downhill Southeast and Eastern States Cup are just two. There are others as well. My problem is that if I am going to enter a race, I am going to race. Good times are great but if I am paying that entry fee, I am going to see what I can wring out of myself to get there. Therein lay my problem. I could not separate the having fun and the racing aspect of it. Having fun meant going faster than the other guys. Going faster than the other guys meant having to strategize, load on a special diet, make every ride into a training ride, whether it was an interval or a planned recovery ride. Even recovery rides were designed to hit certain benchmarks and heart rate zones. Beating as many as I possibly could became the fun. Mentally, that is just the way it is for me. I know I am not alone in that one.

I now ride my Litespeed a couple days a week after work to decompress and just enjoy it. I am a high school teacher so I worked a second job so that I could pick up a carbon Devinci Marshall. I ride it every Saturday morning. My bike handling skills suffered greatly from 5 years off any bike but with some work, and maybe a clinic or two, I will get them back. For now, I am just enjoying the ride again.
  • 2 0
 @nojzilla: I'm having quite the opposite experience. The only thing I want to do when I leave the shop is ride my bike but I either don't have the time or the energy.
  • 1 0
 I've been racing XC for about 30 years. When I was younger I would very well at local Pro/Expert races and do semi-pro NORBA national races. It was great fun traveling and riding outside my home area. I still enjoy XC racing but I've never gone to extreme training. I have a job outside the bike industry that pays all my bills and supports my bike riding. Working 40+ hours a week and staying married make sure I don't have time to overdo the riding. I've seen many people go crazy with the training an burn out. I've never thought I would make a living riding my bike so it has always just be a lot of fun.
  • 2 0
 @gnarnaimo: totally agree with you there. Car industry= hurt biz.
Sad to hear about people being turned off riding their bikes.
Customer service industry can be so draining.
  • 1 0
 There definitely miss some truth to that. When your passion becomes work it can take the fun factor out of it. However, all of the pros who are getting paid to ride, are the most passionate about riding and have this insatiable thirst to constantly get better and push their limits. If they didn't, they would not last.
  • 1 0
 @Tmackstab: So when you left the bike industry what was the result? Are you back into it or has it changed your outlook for the long haul?
  • 1 0
 @greg1: I took about 10 years off from bikes. Back into it again now but not employed in the industry. Sometimes I think about getting back in but then I read comments on here and hear horror stories about customers from my friends in shops and change my mind.
  • 2 0
 When your livelihood depends on your hobbies, it's pretty easy to start resenting those hobbies. This is true of almost any activity where the number of participants far outweighs the number of careers: cycling, music, writing, fine art, etc..
  • 2 0
 @paulskibum: agreed. Although I’m no hermit and enjoy company, mountain biking for me is getting away from others and being on my own. After years of doing team sports, it’s a welcome change and gets rid of the work blues. No issue with other riders and a cheery ‘hi’ etc, but largely like the trails quiet and the thought of racing or a large group event isn’t for me. Whatever floats your boat I guess.
  • 36 1
 Good times with Adam! He is a great dude. And yes you can be paid to do your hobby and that still stays a hobby. Won't trade that job for anything else for now.
  • 5 0
 even setting up your own Bakery?
  • 4 5
 Remy my hobby is to have fun with nice and young girls but no one pay me, I have always to pay! Got any advice for me?
  • 2 1
 @jannoski: Porn?
  • 27 4
 To answer the question...no, one does not have to race to become a professional. He could become a professional poser like so many in the ski industry and make that one turn, that one whip, or that one scenic sunset shot and get paid for it.
  • 10 0
 Professional poser! Excellent.
  • 11 21
flag SlodownU (Oct 31, 2019 at 7:57) (Below Threshold)
 Lets also be honest here, and no disrespect to Remy, but the guy clearly came into this sport well funded, so following his model may not be feasible for most.
  • 8 2
 I STRIVE TO BE PART OF THE MARKETING MACHINE!
  • 18 11
 @JCWB - it’s always about what you put in and what you get out of it. If you become a whore, you better get paid well for it. I have nothing against professional posers who actually make living out of it. If you are a pro, be a pro. ”what do you do Sir? - I am famous”.

But if you bang the hell out of your insta using hashtags under pics where it is obvious you can’t ride for shit (and sorry riding girls are particularly good at that) appearing like a pro yet all you get out of it is 30% off selected items in a local shop and a few pieces of swag for free, you better check yourself. Because everyone else gets 30% off, they just need to wait until September. And examples of such cheap instawhores are countless. The thing that amazes me most though is... who the hell rides/skis with these people and take pictures of them?! This is so fricking creeeeepy
  • 49 2
 @SlodownU: well funded? Definitely not. I just put down more work than everyone else who tried at this time.
  • 15 14
 @remymetailler: luxury! when I started riding I had a rigid with steel rims and Kenda tyres. Then my father would come home, beat the hell out of me and take my front wheel to sell it for crack. Did I mention that we lived in a lake? All nine of us and a deaf mother.

Here... I saved you "how poor exactly were you when you started riding?" kind of discussion
  • 11 0
 @remymetailler: people who know, know how much work and ethic you ride and do anything in! Keep up the wicked work!
  • 4 1
 @WAKIdesigns: and now you're drinking Chateau de Chatelet!
  • 6 0
 @remymetailler: Remy, you do put out good content. + your level of riding is amazing.
power to you, for making it work.
  • 1 0
 @remymetailler: Need to "work" to the East Coast and come ride Windrock & Pisgah with us.
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns: john cleese ,marty Feldman reference?
  • 1 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Before when I worked in a snowboard/skate/surf shop, Pro deal was 40% off gear. It was a specific application with the company through your sales representative. You had to wait little longer for product until all the retailers got their goods, then they would satisfy the pro deals. That was a long time ago, though. I am not sure how it is now.
  • 5 2
 "professional poser" you just described all the instagram "influencers" perfectly
  • 8 5
 @tacklingdummy: it depends on a situation but influencers (or influenzas as I call them ) get very little for WorldCup level online activity. When a chick I know posts more than Emily Batty, Rachel Atherton, Casey Brown and all Trek teams combined then well... “so grateful”, “working hard” oh fk you baby.

What changed simce the long time ago you speak of, is that online shops bombard you with stuff at pricing just above pro deals, and regular shops sale off gear and complete bikes at the end of the season. It was not really the case before 2010, at least not to such extent.

I got pushed once to become an influencer when this trend was starting and I regret every single of 3 e-mails that I wrote asking for stuff. It was to Bell, Absolute Black and someone else. Bell replied they were cool, but couldn’t help me at that moment. Absolute didn’t say anything. I am fricking digusted,
Ugh, bleh, I felt like a fricking douche, but I know many people wouldn’t be. Not my thing. I got approached by a few companies and in case of Antidote, I honestly don’t know what kind of bloody meaningful thing have I ever done for them, other than reply to a few e-mails
Of potential clients. I cannot offer almost anything to anyone, within even the most blurry borders of being sincere. And almost no non-top-racer can. You have to be able to provide exposure for people who invest in you. And if you are just some insta whore, you will fool a couple of folks, attract a few creeps but sooner or later they will leave you for a new approachable bro or sis from the hood and your from behind bars pictures with pathetic captions and long rows of hashtags will be worth sht. You’ll be just another douchebag or stupid chick.
  • 19 0
 This comment section has a disturbing lack of Josh Bryceland
  • 14 0
 Let's be honest here, if I was bicycling for income, I'd have gone out of business. It would be a TV show like, "well now he's drinking another 15 beer, now he's meandering around in front of his house like a gerbil, now he's throwing up, now he's sitting on his couch, and we'll catch up with him tomorrow when he does the same thing, here at MTB Mothereffer".........................
  • 14 0
 Next PB video series - videos about builders in different places, I'd definitely watch something that shows how/why different builders chose to build / how they build / how they do things differently to other builders depending on area/dirt/user base etc.
  • 14 2
 Two Ram Dass quotes immediately come to mind:
- “You walk down the street and you’re somebody; you dress like somebody; your face looks like somebody. Everybody is reinforcing their structure of the universe over and over again and you meet like two huge things meeting. We enter into these conspiracies. You say, I’ll make believe you are who you think you are if you make believe I am who I think I am."
- “The game is not about becoming somebody, it’s about becoming nobody.”
  • 2 0
 so the pro title only enforces ones ego?
  • 1 0
 @TerrapinBen: I wouldn't say only, the pro title also implies that you get paid by someone to do something.
  • 2 1
 @chacou: Pro Title can mean that you decided to what you want to be doing and get paid for it.
  • 1 0
 @chacou: Yeah, and who doesn't want to be pro or get paid to ride their bike? The distinction between those who want and those who do is the work ethic and skills making them worthy of the pro title. One thing is certain; being pro ain't easy, otherwise we'd all be pro. I think this is where the Ram Das quote can be applicable. Pros who rip should be proud that they rip and have no need to pretend their work ethic and bike riding skills are just like everyone else. Because they are not. Being humble is one thing, denying your abilities is a whole different matter.

Props to Remy for his mad riding skills, speed, work ethic, and dedication to riding bikes. Props to Adam for his skills, work ethic, and awesome content over the past few seasons. And props to all the other pros out there - racers and otherwise - who are willing to put in the work to achieve their dreams and work harder than everyone else who wishes they were something they're not.
  • 2 0
 @TerrapinBen: To each their own. For me, being a nobody and having fun on my bike with my family & friends is enough.
  • 3 4
 @chacou: I do enjoy these existential polemics. So... you are nobody on the bike, who are you in the family, who are you at your job? And well, you may achieve the “nobody” on your bike for yourself but you are definitely not nobody to other around unless you totally suck at riding bikes and people literally look away. But then... you become the lepper archetype. You can convince yourself into being almost anything, especially (!) when you stray away from people who can confront this image you created for yourself. As much as There is no escape from yourself, there is no escape from the common reality.
  • 2 1
 @WAKIdesigns: I started writing a heady, lengthy response but it's just turtles all the way down. I think "the common reality" could benefit from embracing more psychedelic, spiritual experiences. If this social experiment has shown us anything it's that the ego and mental fitness is far more important to being a professional mountain biker than what bike you're on, what physical fitness program you follow, or what title is ascribed to one. I'm not saying having a strong ego is bad, it's important as we saw on Carson Storch's rampage run "you got this" that the ego helping him through. But it's also important to balance the ego with selflessness and empathy and recognizing that this is all ephemeral. ...and there it ended up being a bit lengthy Wink
  • 1 1
 @chacou: as a student of the plants... and mentalophile... I don’t blame you for not delivering a response because how could you describe what I believe you try to describe with words of language of progress, English that is, which by many means is still richer than languages I operate that is Polish and Swedish.

Now... the first issue for me is... what is ego? We tend to package to much negativity into it. Ego is one of driving life forces, like love, like the ID. I embrace it, it can be a happy child running around not thinking about consequences, happy from the rainy weather as it can play in the puddles. Or it can be the roughest teacher, the condemning figure. It’s A demon like any other. You can make it help you, but don’t deal with it too much or it will eat you. The void.
  • 12 0
 I don't want to be like a pro mountain biker. Turning your favorite hobby into a job sounds shitty to me. I'm satisfied being a brave amateur.
  • 4 2
 Traveling the world riding your bike...yepp sounds terrible...
  • 4 1
 @Karpiel073: I mean... I do that, but on my terms, not some sponsor or race series. Take this as a grain of salt but I know the promoter who put on the very first Redbull Fox Hunt thing with Gee Atherton. He said Gee told him some f*cked up shit about what he had to do as a Red Bull rider. Yeah they flew him around to ride everywhere but the manner in which it all went down essentially made it so he didn't wanna ride recreationally anymore. That may not be the case now, but whenever that was that's where his head was at.
  • 5 1
 @Karpiel073: it isn't a holiday
  • 1 0
 @Rucker10: Makken recently dropped RedBull after many years and alluded to similar behavior but didn't get into specifics.
  • 5 0
 I would say if you are getting paid to ride your bike, you are a professional. Danny MacAskill doesn't race, but I'd consider him a pro. Being sponsored also counts as getting paid as long as it's not; "I race Cat3, but because i work at a bike shop they sponsor me by paying my entrance fee and letting me use a bike from the shop".
  • 7 0
 Am I on the wrong site? I can't find the Ham and Pineapple.
  • 8 1
 I identify as a pro, anybody who says I am not is a fantasy-pro-a-phobe.
  • 6 3
 As much as I appreciate what MX has done for the evolution of DH bikes/racing I really hated the whole 'bro' scene at races. Still better IMO than a bunch of hipsters riding their track bikes around town but to me biking doesn't have a culture behind it. You ride just because you like to ride bikes
  • 5 0
 You might like cyclocross. All walks of life come out to cyclocross races.
  • 4 1
 I wonder if Adam would have had better race results at this point if he had not done this Privateer experiment. In 2018 he was 2nd at the Cascadia dirt cup race at Tiger, only beat by Luke Strobel (who we all know is a former WC pro who lives next to Tiger). This year, he was in the bottom half of the pro field and it wasn't due to a mechanical, he was bottom half in every stage. I can only imagine all the pressure to improve from the prior year with the whole mtb world watching made him ride stiff. I know I would. I hope he doesn't quit racing, but does it out of the spotlight until his real potential shows in his results.
  • 3 0
 I have two theories:
1. There wasn't as much competition at the time because the sport wasn't as popular and/or lucrative
2. People yelling your name ALL THE WAY DOWN A COURSE CAN FOKK WITH YOUR HEAD

I used to tell my buddies, girlfriend...whoever...."DONT SAY MY NAME" on course. I'm easily distracted & have wrecked at the instant someone shouts "Butch". My brain is like "oh, who was that?" or "man they can tell I messed that section up"...anything other than "rock, pump, crank, pivot, pull..." and I would go down.
He became an internationally known...not locally...INTERNATIONALLY IDENTIFIABLE personality in a span of a few months. I can't imagine it.
  • 3 0
 God bless collegiate racing for brining all the best elements of riding and racing bikes and not ever ruining my mindset towards riding as a whole. Even going to nationals and taking it seriously was so much fun, laid back vibes with people throwing down everything they had. Can’t get better in my opinion.
  • 1 0
 Plus one. In the states collegiate racing is so awesome, road, cross, dirt in XC, ST, DH and DS. All about the team and so much fun. Maybe we need collegiate Enduro?
  • 2 0
 Riding a trail to race it is much different than riding a trail to have fun on it. Racing can kill the fun if you put too much into the results and the results don't come. I like to race locally for the social aspect of it but doing it for the results is a bit of a buzz kill because when it comes down to it. I'm not that fast, and to be that fast I need to do a bunch of work, I don't want to work, I want to have fun.
  • 2 0
 This is something I am starting to wonder about. I'm late to the race scene and I know I won't be on the podium or going pro any time soon. But fast is fun, so I do want to go fast....or at least fast-er than I go now. So I want to put in the work, but not so much where it's just a grind. Hard to find that balance.
  • 2 0
 @roma258: Well, do what you want is the easy answer. But here is the complex answer. How much talent do you have and how much work did you put in for your formative years? (20-35ish) cause if you're late to the race game all those that kept competing are still here, they all didn't leave, most are still hanging around. So if you think you're just gonna show up in your middle age form and kick ass on the rest in your category, unless you're an outlier of extraordinary proportions then you have a rude awakening. Fast is fast, if you were the fastest then, then you might be one of the fastest now. But if you didn't really check back then (multiple, I mean multiple times) chances are that the guys you raced then that were trying and maybe competing in world cup events are gonna totally destroy you. I'm not trying to be a dick about this, I'm just relating my life experience, competing against people who were in it the whole time is a tough deal in age categories. 50th place in a world cup is pretty f*cking badass in the rest of the world or even qualifying.
  • 2 0
 If you want to be a pro, but don’t have a great screen presence, you’ll want be be one of the fastest.
If you want to be a pro, but aren’t one of the fastest, you’ll want to have great screen presence.
Remy has both, so 2X pro.
  • 3 0
 Racing almost killed it for me. So I quit and started having fun. I have friends that love the training part of it. Just not for me.
  • 2 0
 I love racing, even though I can't afford it anymore. I just like pitting myself against a clock and trying to clean and clear all the obstacles on a DH track as best I can in as chaotic/fluid/aggressive a fashion as possible. It's also an awesome way to keep my honest about my own fitness. Clock don't lie.
The races are fun. The people are fun. We're mostly nerds. Comparing stories afterwards is fun. Losing isn't. But when I was offered a Pro license at age 29 about to turn 30, I turned it down because I felt like I was a "fake" pro in that I wasn't fighting to get to the #1 spot at Nationals or considering World Cups. I was just "faster than other people".
I meet people the whole way who hated me simply because I raced. They had never even spoken to me. Called me "Racer boy" and wouldn't do runs with me?
I realize there are people who are super serious about racing...but they're usually super serious about anything. I was serious about racing while I was on the course...and an idiot off course.

I miss it every day. It's a blast. It's only stressful if you let yourself be disappointed in the result. I'm more interested in the puzzle itself and then re-hashing it after with people stoked on riding hard things at far too fast of a speed. tup
  • 1 0
 I started riding from a very early 5 years age. It was all about play and fun. I gradually got into racing bmx around 9 years old. It was still just about play and fun. when anything changes from play it then becomes boring work. When it becomes work, you become disinterested.
  • 1 0
 I raced in college, and like many others never became that fast. I can beast up climbs and throw down some miles when I want to, but I never made it above the B category. I LOVE racing and it's probably because I never put lots of time into racing or preparing. The best way to get faster is by riding your bike, so I rode a lot as my training. I was fit enough to keep up I hung in the pack, pushed myself, and enjoyed the laid back nature of the lower divisions. Pushing harder would have ruined it for me, but I can't say racing ruins riding for everyone. It's all about what you're trying to get out of it, and I like a bit of competition in my sport.
  • 1 0
 Sports, from a sponsor's perspective, has evolved from how an athlete performs in an event, to how an athlete promotes a product. Years ago I saw a profile of a young pro snowboarder (can't recall his name), who was touted as the next big thing. He wasn't particularly stoked on the idea of competing any longer, so he transitioned into an ambassador role for his sponsors and rather than travel the world competing, he traveled the world making amazing short films in beautiful locations. Personally, I feel he made the right choice. Athletes like Cam McCaul, Micayla Gatto, Josh Bryceland, have all transitioned into that ambassador role where than can earn money simply doing what they love and filming cool videos without the stresses of having to race against a clock or other athletes.
  • 2 2
 But theres the rub - are these over the hill ambassadors “taking a spot “ of a up and coming racer? There is only so much dough in the promotional / race team budget and do they want to develop talent?
The company has to juggle this return on investment-
Intense was smart to make Shawn Palmer a coach so they got the best of both worlds -
Is it better for Trek to promote Eathan Shandro now instead of his Dad ( Andrew) - riding the Shore??
  • 2 0
 @regdunlop: Where sponsors are concerned it's all about ROI and views. I don't think age is really a consideration, but rather how that athlete promotes the brand and serves as a face for the company. I'd go so far as to say that if older athletes who have been around the block a few times get a job over a much younger rider, it has more to do with that veterans knowledge of how to be a brand ambassador, whereas the youngster simply hasn't developed that skill.

If you're a brand with a 'Win on Sunday, sell on Monday' mentality, you will always go with the best chance you can find to win a race, which usually means youth. But more and more brands are realizing that getting on a podium might not be as profitable as say, posting a photo of their latest offering on a sponsored rider's Instagram who happens to have 1m followers, but has never actually won a race. Personality can take time to develop, and as David Mamet said, "Old age and treachery will always beat youth and exuberance." As an old man myself, I root for the old timers. The kids will have their day in the sun.
  • 4 0
 if the UK is anything to go by, put some ass and titties on instagram and suppliers throw all sorts of free shit your way.
  • 1 0
 I like riding my bikes but I have never been anywhere near good enough to be a pro, yesterday I crashed off a bridge I have ridden hundreds of times, but I sure enjoy riding. I have seen a lot of - If you turn something you love into a job it becomes work - in the comments today. I will just say I have always loved arguing about political and economic theory, I became a political philosopher, now I get paid (pretty decently) to talk about it, think about it and write about it. I really like my job, and I still love talking about it whenever I get the chance outside work. I suspect if I had been good enough to turn biking into a career it would have been pretty fun at least for a while.
Also I enjoy Remy's riding a trail with someone videos. He has great skills and always seems like he still enjoys the ride. He also seems like he would be fun to ride with even when he is a world better than you. So I am glad if he makes a living at it.
  • 2 0
 I work in the Railway industry. And a lot of my fellow work colleagues absolutely LOVE trains. Many of them, never want to retire. Working in an industry you enjoy, isn’t a sob story.
  • 1 0
 A good few years back I played a lot of rugby. Training was in an evening followed by some beers, then a game on a Saturday / Sunday, followed by more beers. It was great; a great hobby. I was then scouted and played for a national team - the training upped, beers dropped. Training and playing became a chore with more discipline needed than I wanted to give it. Unfortunately it's what I thought I wanted to do and what I'd set my life out to become.
I left the club and haven't played (much) since. Hobbies and jobs are different things to different people. If you can make it work (usually through financial constraints) then crack on. But it's often better to keep your 'fun thing' just that.
  • 3 0
 If a company is willing to pay you for doing what you do on a bike then your pro.
  • 2 0
 Do you need to race? No. But most top level athletes raced. Racing teaches the fundamentals.

theteamrobot.blogspot.com/2014/11/late-to-party.html
  • 4 1
 So, in other news: can someone tell me what happened to Friday Fails? Lawsuit? Aliens?
  • 1 0
 I like racing at a recreational level around my city. I feel like a racer, but I'm just out there having fun and trying to improve from race to race. No pressure and it motivates me to train during the week.
  • 4 1
 As soon as you start being paid for something it becomes a job.
  • 11 9
 Has the Privateer finally worked out that all the money PB are throwing at him wont turn him into a top level racer?
  • 17 2
 He was a pro anyway, just a part timer with a full time job. His employer and/or he came up with an excellent concept and put it into place and filmed it. They sold stuff, the parts sponsors sold stuff & I watched every episode rooting for him to have more and more fun & get all the support he deserved for the work he put into it...all the while knowing he'd be criticized by douchebags like you.

Don't be an asshat.
  • 8 17
flag nathanbal (Oct 31, 2019 at 11:09) (Below Threshold)
 @bizutch: lol ... he deserves all the criticism he gets because he doesn't deserve any of the help and sponsorship he's getting.
  • 9 2
 @nathanbal: Well obviously he does because he's got the bikes, gear and training all sorted out and you don't.

His goal in life wasn't to be a professional mountain biker. It's a dream many of us have as kids at heart. I also have a dream to fly F16s and if my boss offered to film me learning to fly F16s, I'd take him up on it.

You were an asshat in my first post. Say more, but there aren't levels of asshattery. You're maxed out.
  • 3 14
flag nathanbal (Oct 31, 2019 at 11:25) (Below Threshold)
 @bizutch: and your fanboi level has maxed out. results speak louder than you trying to prop him up.
  • 1 1
 @bizutch: pretty sure if he got picked up by a pro team he'd drop his job lol. Also have you seen him corner? #skidskid
  • 5 0
 @nathanbal "New Jersey". That's all the punishment you need in life
  • 4 0
 @nathanbal: The entire point of The Privateer was to see the difference that pro-level support improves racing. Go to the first episode. You are right - Adam doesn't "deserve" pro-level support. He just got it as a PB experiment.
  • 2 1
 Anybody besides me asking why in the heck they are standing around chipping off bits with a mattoc instead of getting work done with a Rogue Hoe? Madder
  • 1 0
 I am not a coach or anything. I see Adam punching turns a lot. I don't know if that is faster than carving the same turn. Just an observation...
  • 3 0
 Racing: a good ride spoiled.
  • 1 0
 The only thing you need is food and water but if you want to enjoy life then YES you 100% need an awesome bike
  • 4 5
 I'm confused are we equating pro to making money? Look at the loam ranger, making money on youtube but sub-par bike skills and he's definitely not a pro. A very convoluted video that doesn't actually answer the question...
  • 2 0
 I get better answers from the comments section than the actual video
  • 4 4
 Who does this guy have nude pictures of? Can’t hang with the pros in races and certainly doesn’t have the personality to be in front of a camera.
  • 4 4
 Professional = Experience

Same thing, same goddamn thing. Why do people think you need to race something to be a pro?
  • 6 0
 Wade Simmons and Brett Tippie never raced but they're def pros. Someone who puts in the same amount of time and still rides black should not be considered a pro. Experience vs growth is the difference
  • 1 0
 @monkeybizz: Wade raced for years / decades - from bmx - xc- dh - dual slalom - i might be missing something- does wades excellent adventure count??
  • 1 0
 @regdunlop: what I'm seeing is my point is still proven by Brett Tippie although feel free to go on another google witchhunt to disprove that too
  • 1 0
 @zion-i Technically, Professional = Paid. While experience can certainly make it easier to find people willing to pay you, it's neither necessary nor sufficient for being a professional.
  • 6 5
 I guess Adam only knows how to skid corners apparently
  • 2 5
 Why is this guy called the privateer look at that huge sponsor list! Obviously he is on pinkbike payroll as well. This dude is def not a privateer he also receives coaching from gwins coach wtf this isn't even close to what is accessible for most hobby enthusiasts! Maybe if your some rich lawyer or have a trust fund! Again pink bike just fills your head with adds and try to talk you into buying things you don't need. More more this forum is becoming Facebook and turning into one huge biased paid advertisement!
  • 2 0
 you need to watch the first episode, season 1
  • 1 0
 Watch S1 Ep1. He is a Privateer, the experiment is to see if sponsors and factory support make much difference to his results. Do you even watch and listen properly? Jeez.
  • 1 2
 @GazeeMW: I spend to much time doing real tangible things to waste my time watching pinkbike paid advertisements thanks!
  • 1 0
 Great episode!
  • 1 0
 LOL
  • 1 1
 Three cheers for the trailbuilders!
  • 3 3
 Answer to question: No.
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