David J Blucher
Pic by David J Blucher
  
Stoked to have some more Canberrans join the 2017 Otway 300.
It was our first year of the O300 in 2016 and we had a MEGA strong elite mens field with quite a battle over the 2 days.
Having Marc Williams and Trekky is going to add again to a field that is just as huge in 2017.
 
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Trekky, what influence has the wise one(Marc) had on your cycling?
Marc has been a big part of my cycling career for the past 7 or 8 year i'd say, we have raced a lot together, a stint on the road even, but he brings a lot of enthusiasm to our training rides and races, his focus is on enjoying all things cycling, I hope I can absorb this.
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Both racing MTB's with Trek, how long have you been with them, any other sponsors you wish to mention?
We have an awesome team behind us especially with Pete Dowse our Manger/Mechanic. Personally I have been with Trek for about 8 years in total, We have a great arrangement and they provide me with a perfect platform to do what I love.
 
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It does appear that every cyclist that ever came out of Canberra dabbles in every disclipine.
Trekky, you have some big results in MTB, XCO specifically and most recently on the weekend with 2 back to back wins in Elite mens.
How many years have you been working on this win?
Thanks! I have dabbled in XCO for a while, I think my last XCO national win was probably 9 years ago in U/17s, Im always working on the bike year round, Id say these XCO wins have come at a time when I probably didn't expect them, My training lately hasn't been as structured. I suppose a step back in seriousness has allowed me to relax and the results have come. Very pleasing.
In 2015, you came 3rd in the very challenging MTB stage race, The Croc Trophy.  This is a lot different to a sub 2hr XCO race! Can you share your memories on this and how you felt during and afterwards?
I went to the Croc Trophy straight after I returned from some world cups in Europe and US, it was at the end of a very long years racing. I wasn't in great shape, pretty cooked actually but I pushed through it. I would have to say i had one of if not THE hardest days on my bike midway through the race. I crossed the line into Irvinebank very close to tears.
 
Back in 2009 you were diagnosed with cancer, received treatment and surgery, fought hard for a good 12 months and came through the other end.  Would you say this amazing experience of adversity at a young age has helped define your goals and strengthened your determination?  
How has it changed you to who you are today as a person and an elite athlete?
I think when you have been as low as it gets you then discover a lot about yourself and what you are capable of as a human. I draw on that period as very much a life experience, I tend to be very ambitions now days weather its at work or in my training, I have a huge confidence, not so much in my abilities but In my mind and my will to get things done.
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You have both completed and raced many XCMs (and won or podiumed many of them) as well as mtb stage races.
We would love to know why you are keen to race the Otway 300.
I'm very excited to race in a pair with Marc, I have done the Duo Classic a couple of times and enjoyed it but an event like the Otway seems like we will have a long hard battle out there and I love the idea of that!
 
The entire field is shaping up to be full on people who are fast, who know how to have fun, who have travelled far, who embrace a challenge, who are back again this year to improve on last year and many who just want to see what they are capable of.
I personally am so stoked I turned my little day dream into an event, one day I might get to race it myself!  Jess.x