Sam Payet is just one of the current crop of fast downhill and enduro riders on the come up in Western Australia. He’s a regular podium attendee and has some wicked style on the bike but that’s not a lot to go on so we thought we’d sit down and ask him a few questions.
What bikes are you currently riding?
For downhill I’m on a Morewood Makulu which I’ve had for about 6 months now, the suspension is pretty active so its tracks really well and its super fun on rougher tracks. I’ve also been riding Morewoods Sukuma out on the trails and some of the more tame downhill tracks over here, it’s a pretty playful bike and is perfect for a mid-week shred on the trails.
Do you enduro?
I mountainbike does that count?
Who do you think is going to surprise us on the race scene this year?
There’s few guys that have come over from motocross who are getting pretty quick, at the same time some of the other regulars have been training really hard so I think instead of any standout performances we can expect a pretty tight top 5 with most guys looking to push up the ranks.
What are you looking for in your bike set up?
I like my suspension to be active and I also like to get feedback from the track without muting it. For me having a reliable setup is also really important for confidence, especially when you’re racing and you only want to be focusing on riding not mechanicals.
What would be your plan to beat Sam Hill at the next local race he attends?
Sam has been turning up to local clubbies and state races ever since I started riding downhill and he’s always awesome to watch. I definitely have a lot to learn from his cornering skills and creative lines so maybe that’s a place to start!
Do you have a training program?
I do most of my training on bikes with some gym work thrown in. There aren’t many downhill tracks within a short drive of Perth so during the week I’ll get some K’s up on the road for fitness or get out on the trails. On weekends it’s all downhill.
What’s your favourite track?
Nannup would have to be my favourite location for downhill in WA. The place offers what most tracks over here lack being steep and rocky. A few different builders have worked there over the years so there are plenty of different tracks ranging from flowy to gnarly. The 2014 state downhill series is revisiting Nannup for the first time in a few years so everyone’s pretty pumped to race there again.
If you could go back in time two years what would you say to yourself?
Save some pennies and go ride overseas!
Sniper line or send it?
Send it for the crowd
If you had to put two things on toast what would it be?
Cheese and vegemite
Anyone you want to thank?
A huge thanks to the awesome blokes Sam and Alan at Pushie Enterprises for hooking me up with all things bike related and the support they’ve given me so far, and thanks mum for packin me lunches when I go riding.
Tell us about the bike scene in WA?
The downhill scene over here is pretty tight, most riders know each other so there’s always good banter at the races. Nothing better than coming down on you race run and having a huge crowd heckle you at the bottom.
Words : Sam Russell Photos : Sean Lee