Homebase: Waterbury, VT
Sponsors that keep Matt rolling: Moots Cycles, Rudy Project, Maxxis, GU Energy
So how’d you get hooked on mountain biking?
When I was 15 I got my first non-department store mountain bike and started exploring the local trails. It didn’t take long before I was hooked and swapped my Specialized Hardrock for a Marin Bobcat, then a Cannondale CAAD3. I pulled many of my high school friends into it along the way.
Who or what inspires your racing and style?
I have to be careful with this one since I’m older than many of the top athletes today. When I first got into racing, Thomas Frischknecht was the man everyone wanted to beat. He was competitive in every discipline. Now mountain bike culture is much less about racing, so even though I fit squarely into the racer geek category I admire riders who bring their A game to big races but also do alternative format events like Downieville.
Whatcha got cookin’ for the future?
For now the plan is to keep focusing on endurance racing and improving there as much as possible. I can have a bad day in a 50 mile race and still be competitive so that’s the best fit for my natural ability. I stopped racing cyclocross a couple years ago mainly because I was using it as an outrigger for marathons. When things got difficult in racing or training I could tell myself that I had something else to focus on later instead of working through what I was doing. I might show up for a couple of cross events, but it would be for training only. I’d say for fun, but cross racing isn’t actually fun until it’s over. This season I dipped my toe into enduro racing so I’ll likely do more of those if the courses aren’t too death-defying.
Who’s behind the scenes supporting your cycling habit?
Well first I’d like to thank my wife for being supportive of my pursuits. It’s meant skipping get-togethers with family and friends and bringing a bike on just about every trip we’ve taken.
I’d also like to thank my sponsors who’ve all been supporting me for several seasons, in particular Moots Cycles. Moots is my main sponsor as I’m racing for the Grass Moots team and flying their flag in races. I’ve been a Moots fan since I first saw the YBB in Mountain Bike Action in 1997 so to race for them is pretty amazing. Currently I have two great race bikes to choose from in the MX RSL hardtail and MX Divide full suspension.