World champion wheelie enjoys local hospitality

Steve Peat and Hans Rey enjoying breakfast at the Derby Arms, Thornley, Longridge.
Steve Peat and Hans Rey enjoying breakfast at the Derby Arms, Thornley, Longridge.

A multiple world champion mountain biker experienced the best of the Ribble Valley countryside by bike after being the star of a show at The Grand in Clitheroe.

German-born Hans Rey, who now lives at Laguna Beach California, is considered a world leader in extreme mountain biking. He was invited to The Grand to talk about his career by Daniel Jones, of Random Adventure, a new venture which aims to bring cycling and adventure related speakers to venues across the north west of England. The talk was supported by Richard Paige of Clitheroe bike shop The Green Jersey.

After agreeing to host the An Evening with Hans Rey, where he captivated the audience with tales of his career including his recent summit of Mount Kilimanjaro on a mountain bike, Hans decided prior to his talk, he’d go on a ride around Gisburn Forest with Sheffield-based former mountain bike world champion Steve Peat, who’d be joining him on stage in Clitheroe.

“I haven’t done much riding in Lancashire in the past but know all about its reputation as a great place to ride and it didn’t disappoint,” he said.

The event at The Grand was a big success for organiser Daniel Jones, with Hans entertaining the crowd right up until the venue’s curfew.

Dan said: “Mountain biking fans in the area were really excited about Hans coming to the county and the tales he would have to tell. He kept everyone really entertained, leaving no time at the end for the planned Q&A session because he had so much to talk about!

“It’s great that Hans and Steve went to ride up Gisburn Forest; they certainly made some Sunday morning riders do a double take as they rode by. They posed for photos almost as much as they rode, showing how friendly and accommodating the mountain biking community is.”

Afterwards Hans and Steve enjoyed a great night’s sleep and a tasty breakfast at the Derby Arms at Thornley before heading up to Barnoldswick, to see UK component manufacturer Hope and experience some moto trials with trials world champion Dougie Lampkin.

Billy Edisford, assistant manager of the Derby Arms, said: “When we heard Hans was looking for somewhere to stay while in the area for the night, we were delighted to offer him a complimentary night at the Derby Arms.

“Our location in the heart of the Forest of Bowland means we are often visited by cyclists, whether they are calling in for refreshments mid-ride or staying with us for the weekend while they explore the area. So, we were well prepared for welcoming Hans and Steve’s and enjoyed listening to tales of their adventures over breakfast and using our local knowledge to help them prepare for their ride.”