The Weekly Rider - Rich Kemp

Presented by Black Sheep Cycling

Rich Kemp is the La Velocita Weekly Rider! From motorcycle racing to mountain biking, cyclocross and road, Rich pretty much loves anything on two wheels.

A passionate Hells 500 rider he's Everested and immersed himself in all cycling has to offer. We talk to Rich about why he loves to ride.

The Weekly Rider is presented by Black Sheep Cycling

The Weekly Rider is presented by Black Sheep Cycling

Words Rich Kemp 

Images - Lewis Greenhalgh, Angus Crisp and Andy van Bergen.

Name: Rich Kemp

Lives: Melbourne

Dream bike: An upgrade to my current Sworks Tarmac as it's becoming a bit long in the tooth and deserved of a comfortable retirement.

Favourite local ride: The Dandenong's is rife with brilliant routes and fabulous vistas, but sadly due to its location I don't get out there enough.

My favorite weekly ride is RFWYA which brings together our motley crue every Tuesday from 6:30am for tough hit outs around Kew and surrounding streets. 

My current cycling goal is: My goals are many and varied. I have an itch to complete a special Everesting in the coming months... and there's the small matter of this year's Melbourne to Warrnambool. Next year I hope to win a VRS race and to stay away for the win at The Hell of the West rather than for only half of it. 

When I am on the bike I... Look good. 

How did you love for bikes come about? I've been obsessed with 2 wheels forever. My Dad was a famous professional motorcycle racer and I'd inadvertently inhaled those competitive fumes from a very young age.

Having raced BMX as a youngster, I'd always had bikes, but it wasn't until I'd retired from racing motorcycles internationally that they took over my life. I'd needed a competitive outlet after returning to live in Australia, so 2 mates took me and my old London commuter up to Kinglake... I hated it soooo much that I took up endurance mountain bike racing instead - as well as competing in occasional Track & Cyclocross events.

Years later the road bike again beckoned, only now I was strong enough for the climbs such as Kinglake and beyond. I began road racing this year and happily embraced that competitor buzz again. 

Share a cycling memory: I recently represented Australia at the UCI World Masters Championships in Denmark and had a blast. In retrospect, it was fun to have been handed my own arse in such a professional and surreal environment.

I love to ride because... Riding has provided me with some of my best friends and people. I consider them my brothers and sisters. From my Hells500 brethren and the amazingly supportive Everesting family I'm so very lucky to be a part of, to those I've met racing track, cyclocross mountain and road bikes, it's a sport and pastime I dearly love and to which I will be forever grateful.

Cycling not only fosters the competitiveness I crave, but also provides camaraderie and fun! Its freedom, fitness, friendship and something I'm so glad to have found and which is now such as a major part of my life.