Martin Ogden & Haro Porter Bike Check

Feb 23, 2010 at 13:43
by John Lee  

Martin Ogden aka "Oggy" has been on the bike racing scene for a number of years now as a pro rider and he has battled his way into becoming one of the darkest horses on any race track. A huge, all-round talented racer and a very genuine down to earth bloke - whether it's a 4X race or Time trial event, this guy excels at it.

Learn more about the "Oggy" legend inside, and some real home truths about being a pro rider!

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Hey Oggy - Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, race discipline, family, job and how long you have been doing this racing lark?
Hey, I'm Martin Ogden, I live in the delightful city of Bradford with my my partner Kylie and my son Jordan. I race bmx and 4X and the occasional downhill when I get the chance. I work as a youth worker/ door supervisor/ social services and cycling coach in all areas.

What has been your Career Highlight?
My highlights would be my first bmx national win and series win in '95, the 4X series in '01, '05, '06, lots of memorable wins including an open 4X event in Germany in 2001 which was screened on Eurosport. Also a little unknown piece of information, I was the first UK rider to win the US open at mountain creek in Vernon, New Jersey in 2000, maybe it wasn't the US open back then, but it was a downhill race that I didn't expect to win and I beat all the pros on a Brooklyn machine works TMX.


Worst career moment?
Oh lots of them, getting mad at a bmx race and launching my bike at the finish and it hit one of the officials, I got DQ'd and that cost me the title at the end of the year, not cool at all. 2 4X races in Switzerland, first time made it to semi finals was comfortably in 2nd and got a flat in the 2nd to last corner, inner tube came out and wrapped the disk and jammed the back wheel, 2nd time crashed in a turn for no apparent reason, just about every 4X national champs if something goes wrong it goes wrong at the champs, and Fort will too, maybe I'm jinxed?!

Oggy pinning it in the 2009 NPS 4X series
Oggy pinning it in the 2009 NPS 4X series

What's your typical training schedule like over 7 days?
The UK sucks as far as any schedule goes, tryin' to plan round the weather never works, so I don't have a schedule as such, I just take it on the day and what I feel like doing, it maybe a gym session, road bike or some 4X action. Also work gets in the way quite a lot too, so I have to compromise sometimes.

Martin leading the way at Bradford Bandits BMX gate practice session
Martin leading the way at Bradford Bandits BMX gate practice session

Most embarrassing moment in your Career?
Not sure on that one, not embarrassing but certainly memorable was the walk back up the track at Fort William world cup in 2001 after I'd just won the 1/8ths to speak to the blind commissaire that DQ'd me for crossing a lane that had already ended, if I could go back in time I would have chinned the idiot, was funny cause Tim Floox had to usher me away from strangling the UCI chief commissaire. Thanks Tim!

You have seen the MTB race and ride scene really develop in your career, what 3 things stand out to you as the biggest jumps in progression of the sport of MTB`s?
In 4x things are going backwards, I know Chris Roberts quite well as the UK 4X organiser and often have chats with him about the tracks and it usually ends up with Chris thinking I'm having a go at him but I'm not at all, some people are waiting for the 4X boom to happen but what some don't understand is that 4X is not new any more it's over 10 years old, the old 4X tracks back in 2000 were way better than what they are now, is that progression? Not quite, in 2001 there was a 4X track with a 35 foot double in it and the run in was downhill and the jump was almost too small for the speed you had, there were people jumping it people who couldn't do it going round it, it just looked good for the riders that were jumping it and if you didn't jump it you were not winning, I kinda like that kind of course, at pro level do the jumps or go home. I see 4X going the same way that bmx did, were people just got bored of the tracks and didn't bother anymore and went digging in the woods, bmx certainly has upped its game recently and is enjoying a revival, hopefully 4X will go the same way, I know there's plans for some new courses this year, so fingers crossed it will be good.

Martin pinning the Porter
Martin pinning the Porter

Mountain Biking is seeming to begin to collect a lot of attention these days and some people are even lucky enough to be paid to ride full time, as a guy who has been in this job for along time and at a high level - what's the reality of being a sponsored rider and having a family etc?
The reality is unless your partner fully understands what you're doing, then it's the hardest thing ever. I think that's why Peaty's got it good cause Adele was a pro rider herself and 100 percent supports him and understands the 2 weeks in Spain trip to test out the latest part is a major part of what will get him on the podium, it sucks when your half an hour in to a gym session and the missus texts you to find out what time you're coming home cause suddenly she needs to go out and needs you to drive her there. My missus thinks that when I go away racing, I get pissed up all the time, it would be nice if I did actually did have a drink sometimes.

Oggy getting down and low
Oggy getting down and low

Is it true that this could be the final Martin Ogden season and can you tell us a little bit about your plans for 2010 and 2011?
Yeah sadly this will be my, I suppose fair well year, lots of reasons really, firstly to find out what a normal home life is all about which at the moment is insecure at best. Old injuries creeping up on me fast, not having the time to train full time really sucks and knowing I should be faster/fitter than what I am, while last year was a painful year been off my bike, nearly all year with a broken collar bone. I ended up finding myself in quite an important job role within the social services working with kids and families. While sometimes it is frustrating, but when the outcomes are good, you really make a difference to other people's lives and the role I'm in it's quite an important one, and as for a career prospect it's certainly something I'd like to pursue further. I am sure I wont be too far away from the race scene though as I'm hoping that Jordan will carry on where I left off.

Oggy - famous for his impressive gate starts
Oggy - famous for his impressive gate starts

People you would like to thank or give a shout out to?
Where do I start? I'll start with my parents, firstly my dad's great cause he used to race motocross way back, so he's been a huge help. My mum for worrying about me when I'm away. All my sponsors for sticking with me this year, Haro bikes, Hope, Manitou, ODI, MRP, Halo, Vice bikes, Sunline. 661, Kenda, SIS, Shimano, Time pedals, Dave Garland at Stendec for getting my bikes hooked up with proper kit, all my friends who I ride with - they're all amazing, probably missing a load people off the list (sorry if I missed you), couple of special mentions, 1 to Terry Seeberg for hooking me up and looking after me on my NYC trips, and lastly to Ged the head (UK Brooklyn guy), who without Ged I would have gone mad years ago, he's been my best friend, personal banker, marriage guidance councilor and also hooked me up with some fine product - and he is a top bloke!

Oggy at Chicksands
Oggy at Chicksands

Can you tell us about your Haro Porter, and your thoughts on this new bike from Haro?
The Porter's amazing, I love that bike on a day when I can't decide what to do, cause I can take it out do some 4X riding and then hit some DH in in my local woods - and just thrash it around for a couple of hours. This bike can adapt and just hit anything!

Oggy!
Oggy!

Bike Check - The Haro Porter

Ogden and his Haro Porter
Ogden and his Haro Porter

The Eric Porter inspired Slopestyle specific bike uses 6061 alloy, has 120mm of rear wheel travel, which places this little beauty in a great little position to make a lot of noise on the race circuit this year. Expect to see it at Crankworx, UK 4X NPS and even at the Mega Avalanche in 2010!

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The shop released version of the 2010 Haro Porter
The shop released version of the 2010 Haro Porter
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10 Comments

  • + 2
 I've ridden with Martin before, way back in the day when he rode for Cortina. We did a DH run down tunnel and nearly got ran off the road going up. I slowed down bc Martin was getting all torqued. I look at him and said "Damn, we might have to take this guy on". He looked back and said " Do you know what I do for a living.... I'm a fookin Bouncer!" From then on a few of us use the term Fook, thanks to Martin.
  • + 3
 awesome interview, that oggy getting down and low photo makes me wonder if its staged though, that shiver doesnt look likes its compressed and the bar and his hand look like they are on the ground
  • + 1
 i think he is falling, i may be wrong but that would make sense. if he came off then his fork would be unweighted and thus not compressed.
  • + 1
 good luck in the future OGGY!!

your feelings about being a "Pro Rider" in the UK ring true, for sure

life catching up with the reality of being a "pro" rider is a harsh trip, you soon realise that "life" is more important Smile


good luck with your future, and keep your wheels on the dirt

cheers

Rob C
Mythic Bikes / Freeborn Bikes / Esher Shore Bike Park
  • + 1
 BFD legend! asif its the guys last ever year! he used to work as a bouncer at a club i went to as a kid, such a sound bloke think im going to have to enter a few nps4x races to see the guy off!
  • + 3
 Down and low=fall. No way he could recover from that angle/hit on the ground.
  • + 3
 Nice interview- Oggy is a legend!!
...wouldn't mess with him though Wink
  • + 1
 I have been luck to have trained and race him - raw power and a reet nice bloke too Go Oggy Go !!!!
  • + 1
 yehh, was one of my fave riders, so aggressive riding style, and a cool fucker too. respect martin lad.
  • + 1
 hey whats the black thing thats on the fork?

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