John Polson is the Weekly Rider! He's the Co-Founder and Creative Director at Black Sheep Cycling. Black Sheep released their first LIMITED Release 2 years ago. Fast forward to today and John is pushing Black Sheep Cycling to new highs with extended ranges and products.
John has also championed Men's mental health awareness with 'The Man Ride', I also think he's one of the people that is influencing the direction that cycling kit design is taking... and I like where he's going with it!
"In December Black Sheep Cycling will be releasing one of the most technically advanced deep winter ranges ever seen in cycling, which is an important moment for us showing that we are here to really put our stamp on the sport. 2017 is going to be truly exciting for Black Sheep, and myself personally. I am marrying the girl of my dreams!"
John Polson from Brisbane, Queensland
For so long I obsessed over carbon, raced on carbon, only ever knew carbon. That was before I started riding on Steel. Now, I am definitely on my dream bike. I am riding a Stinner Frameworks Gibraltar with Dura Ace build. I love the stiffness, the responsiveness, and the general ride quality. I am a little biased because I know the guys at Stinner. However, the experience that any person has when getting a handmade bike is incredibly unique. Whether it's talking to the guy that fabricated your bike, or emailing back and fourth to the person that is painting it. That level of emotional connection in our sport is hard to find.
What is your favourite local ride
My favorite local ride at the moment is any ride, as clichéd as that may sound. They are few and far between. I try and do our regular Black Friday ride in Brissie that we organise. We leave at 4.30pm, ride through the wetlands on the Northside of Brisbane. We go full gas in a made-up sprint somewhere towards the end. Winner takes nothing. We then park up at our local Brewery, Green Beacon in Teneriffe where 20 to 30 guys and girls start necking beers in their lycra during the busiest time of the week. We have been doing it for roughly 18 months and the locals still can't quite get their heads around it.
What is your current cycling goal
It’s just to ride a lot more. I know it must be a common response but it is a sign of the society we live that so many young guys are looking for balance. Black Sheep is rolling out some pretty exciting things in 2017 and I love every single day and moment of what we do. However, I want to start racing again and as my competitive ego needs to be stroked every now and then I need to allocate some more time. Some of our projects will hopefully at least give me a few more excuses to jump back out on the bike.
When I am on the bike I....
Am probably not talking. I go off into my own little world.
How did your love of bikes come about?
It wasn't until university that I started cycling seriously, racing at a high level but never achieving anything of note. I was then lured to triathlon, which is about the point in the story that I start to lose many of the "hard-assed" cyclists.
I went on to compete professionally in Olympic-Distance Triathlon, and then later, in Long Course Triathlon. I was fortunate to travel and spend time in France, Germany, and to a much greater extent, the US. I think this is where I honestly fell in love with cycling and bikes. You spend a lot of time by yourself when the sport is your life.
Share a cycling memory
My first ride in Boulder, Colorado in 2013 was a solo ride out to a lake called Carter Lake. A flat, three hour out and back ride. Easy by Colorado standards. It was a hot Summer day. As any typical Queenslander would, off I went, short-sleeves and not a care in the world. At the turn-around point, exactly 90 minutes out and 90 minutes back, I started admiring how grey the sky looked. Within minutes, it was raining torrentially, temperatures plummeting from 30 degrees to 5 degrees. I got so cold on the way home that I stumbled across an animal shelter. After banging on the door for about five minutes, someone finally let me in, gave me a hot shower, blankets, tea, and I think even gave me 'Bruno' the Labrador to cuddle. It took me two hours to stop shivering. I quickly learned my lesson to never underestimate a sunny day in Colorado.
I love to ride because....
It’s a global language. It’s a pursuit that helps you connect with people and cultures you would have never imagined. We are all incredibly lucky to have cycling in our lives.