No ordinary bike racer, Colin turned down the WorldTour to focus full-time on the greatest, grippiest US gravel grinders. Now, he travels from home in Texas to races across the country in the shining Spartan caravan he refurbished in his own backyard.15 January 2021
Growing up on the family farm in Texas, cycling wasn’t a natural choice for Colin Strickland. In fact, it wouldn’t be until much later in life that he discovered his passion and talent for riding bikes. As a commuter riding in Austin, Colin began to compete in alleycats, throwing his single speed around short city centre circuits.
Those days prepared him well for raw speed and rough racing of the Red Hook Crit series, in which he took his first major race win. A rising star on the crit scene, Colin was also developing a passion for the emerging gravel racing scene. And as it turns out, he’s just as fast riding across the vast open spaces of Kansas as he is fighting for the first corner in a crit.
After several promising results, Colin secured his breakout victory at the 2019 UNBOUND Gravel where he left WorldTour riding for dust en route to a solo win. That feat made shockwaves within cycling and led to an offer from a WorldTour team for Colin. But keen to forge his own path within the sport rather than riding in the service of others, Colin chose to continue his focus on the greatest gravel grinders in the world.
This season will see him compete at every major gravel event in the US and defend his title at UNBOUND Gravel.
“Gravel racing strikes a balance between road and CX, where a true all-around athlete can thrive. I love the dynamics of the terrain and surfaces that you experience in gravel racing. It is often the search for the smoothest race line, which at times can be a very creative process.”
Based in Austin, Texas, Colin focuses exclusively on races in the US, travelling to gravel grinders up and down the country in his Spartan Royal Manor caravan.
THE RIFT - ICELAND
A 200-kilometre off-road bike race through the breathtaking dark lava fields of Iceland’s highlands, The Rift in Hvolsvöllur boasts one of the most surreal backdrops to a race you’ll ever find.
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