Interview with Miles Pearce
Miles Pearce, who was at Reigate School before starting at Reigate College this autumn, is doing AS Levels in Maths, Physics, Product Design and Geography. Here he talks about his passion for mountain-biking and how he’s channelling it towards his Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Award.
How long have you been into mountain-biking?
I’ve loved cycling since I was little, but I’ve only been focusing properly on mountain-biking for the last couple of years.
How often do you go out mountain-biking?
Usually once a week in the winter, and two to three times a week in the summer.
Where are your favourite places to ride?
There are lots of rides I do from my house like Reigate Hill and Box Hill. Others, like Peaslake and the Redlands I take the train to from Reigate to Gomshall or Dorking. My favourite place is Peaslake in the Surrey Hills because of the variety of trails and levels of difficulty.
What do you like about mountain-biking?
I enjoy the freedom and sense of adventure it gives, plus the adrenaline rush you get when tackling new trails. It’s fun and a great thing to do with mates.
What would you say to anyone thinking about getting in to it?
Go for it! You won’t regret it.
Where would your dream place be to go mountain-biking?
I’d have to say either Whistler in Canada or Queenstown in New Zealand.
Do you compete?
I’ve started to compete in a few downhill races and I’m hoping to compete in Enduro races next year.
Have you got any bike-related qualifications?
Not yet, but I’d like to get some bike mechanic qualifications. I work in Finch Cycles in Reigate on Saturdays and the maintenance side really appeals.
How are you linking the Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Award to mountain-biking?
I’m using my mountain-biking for the Physical section and have set myself goals related to learning new tricks, tackling bigger jumps and drops and achieving a good position at a mountain-biking race. In order to fulfil the requirements for DofE Gold, I’ve had to commit to spending at least an hour a week out riding, but I usually spend more. I’m also hoping to link it to the Residential section of DofE as I’m planning on volunteering at a bike park in Wales and doing trail maintenance for a week.
What other things are you doing for your DofE Gold Award?
I’m a member of 135 Squadron Air Training Corps and I’m using the base drumming that I do with them for the Skills section. For the Volunteering section, I’m helping to coach tennis at Reigate Priory Lawn Tennis Club.
What are you planning on doing after College?
MP: I’d like to take a gap year and spend the summer season mountain biking in Whistler, Canada. After that I’m planning on applying to the RAF to become a Jet Fighter Pilot.
Miles Pearce, November 2016