I’m Jake, a second year Politics, Philosophy and Economics student.
I thought I’d start out by talking about one of my passions and how coming to York has allowed me to push myself, meet new people and have a lot of fun though through pursuing this passion.
For as long as I can remember, getting out on my bike has been my favourite thing. I still get that same sense of freedom and adventure every day, when I get out for a ride. Before coming to York, I raced competitively and worked as a mountain bike guide for a number of years. While at school, I was lucky enough to be able to get out into the hills and ride new trails with my friends every day. It provided the perfect escape from our hectic lives and allowed us to make the very most of the beautiful place that we lived. Coming to York, a city which is as flat as a pancake, I was very concerned that my opportunities to continue to pursue my passion would be very limited.
I could not have been more wrong…
Almost as soon as I arrived, I was introduced to an amazing group of like minded individuals who all love bikes just as much as me. The University of York Cycling Club, is a big melting pot full of bike-crazed people from every discipline of cycling. With the club, over the past year and a half, I have been on trips all around the north of England and Wales and have competed in a number of different mountain biking disciplines in inter-university races.
More than that, I have had a blast getting to know all of them and learn more about our shared passion.
Last year, I had the opportunity to compete in the BUCS Downhill Championships. This is the largest inter-university race of the year – with over 300 riders competing from universities all over the UK. Having never competed in a downhill format race before, I was thrown into sharing the track with riders who currently compete on the World Cup circuit. This was an extremely daunting, but it was a great opportunity to push my boundaries and put in the best performance that I could for our team and the university. I learned a lot of lessons that weekend (and picked up a few scars!), but I am proud of my effort and I look forward to going back next year, now knowing what I’m up against!
This year I have been appointed as one of the club’s Mountain Bike Captains. It has been great to get new riders involved and I look forward to seeing it grow and evolve over the next year. With around 200 societies and 66 sports teams – anyone can find like minded people here at York and make great friends that share your passions.