15th December 2022
MASON Rider Roundup 2022 | Angus Young
What a year Angus Young has had, with setting the fastest known time for the European Divide Trail, riding 7600 km in 32 Days, 6Hrs 28mins! Soon we'll be sharing a post-ride video but for now, here's an intro to Angus, a round-up of 2022, and a look into 2023.
Sheer pace and commitment have become Angus Young trademarks, which have resulted in impressive accolades with a dogged determination matched only by a compassionate nature and a truly diverse skillset, that includes holding an elite-level winter triathlete status, there’s no limit to what Angus is capable of.
"Touring is fun, but you can't beat that satisfaction you get by going through the process of preparing for racing your heart out and then reflecting on what you’ve done."
What were your race, ride, and bikepacking adventure highs and lows of 2022?
Well, that's a tricky question to start on. My year has been filled with highs and lows in pretty much every event that I have started. So I think that I'll narrow it down to two specific moments which have stuck in my mind more than any others. I'll start with the low point. For me, this came in HT550, about 500 miles in. I had just gone through Fort William and I was on the home straight of the West Highland Way back to Tyndrum but by this point, a chest infection and lack of sleep had really caught up with me and I was a coughing wheezing mess suffering from an out of body experience, not really knowing why or how I was riding other than I had a sole purpose of following the purple line on my screen. Luckily I had an out and managed to find a warm bed for the night in Kinlochleven before limping back the next day. I was glad to have finished the event but man did I see some dark places.
To pick one highlight of many I would have to choose a moment from the European Divide. One point that jumps out was when I was crossing the French Jura. After traversing the Vosges with no front brake due to a shifter malfunction everything was finally fixed and I could ride my bike without the impending fear of not being able to stop. I had spent the day climbing and had just reached the highest point of the route so far. The sun was coming down and the trail opened up into beautiful flowy gravel. I reached a small village and saw a group of bikepackers who were waiting there for me. They were riding the middle section of the route. They weren't the first dotwatchers that I saw but for some reason, everything lined up and I got a real sense of why I was doing this.
What was the most unexpected event to happen to you/came across along the way?
Nothing ever goes to plan in long events and it seems that the longer the ride the higher the frequency. A couple of unexpected thing to happen to me on my EDT ITT were having to row 75m across a river in sweden, more mechanicals than I ever would have expected and significantly more hike-a-bike than was alluded to in the ride details..
What was the most valuable thing that you learned?
Slow and steady... although I'm sure that ill continue to go out too fast in the future as well.
The most inspirational thing to have happened?
Probably it was the shear number of dotwatchers that I have seen out on course over the year.
Do you have a big goal for 2023?
In 2023 Im hoping to return to HT550 in May and then have a crack at the Silk Road Mountain Race in August. I'll also try and sprinkle in some shorter UK based events.
Were there any rides/races that you planned to do but couldn’t?
I would have loved to get out on the Rhino Run last month but My body just took way too long to recover from the EDT ITT.
Which MASON bikes do you have? Which one were you using on your favourite ride of 2022?
In 2022 I welcomed a RAW to my stable to join the other MASON bikes that I have. I would probably say that I've had the most fun on the RAW this year (closely followed by the InSearchOf). It's a fun and nippy bike that handles so well whilst loaded up with gear. Perfect for both racing and more relaxed adventures.
Do you have any MASON bikes on the wishlist?
At the moment I have all of the bikes that I really need. That said, I wouldn't say no to an Aspect ;)
What a year it's been, thanks Angus, we are looking forward to following all your 2023 adventures.
Photo credit: Angus Young | Dan King
You can catch up on some of Angus' 2022 rides here: