Wight Mountain Cyclist Ben Johnson on his bike on the Isle of Wight

Inspirational Islanders: Ben Johnson, Mountain Biker

Ben Johnson was born on the Island and has raced mountain bikes for over 20 years, competing locally and nationally at short and long distances. He has been competing in off-road triathlons for the last four years nationally and abroad, qualifying for the world championships. He is part of the Wightlink-Wight Mountain Cycle Race Team.

“The Isle of Wight is a great place to live and work, and so diverse in what it has to offer. One minute I can be riding across the downs, the next walking the dog along the beach with my girlfriend, and then heading off into town for work. We truly do have the best of everything all close at hand.

The scenery and views here on the Island are amazing. Riding my bike and running off-road exploring the trails, you get to see parts of the Island that many people just don’t get to experience, and that is what motivates me to get out there training! I probably wouldn’t be so inspired if I lived in a city, surrounded by tower blocks, having to pound the pavements.

My favourite place has to be The Landslip, just because it is a beautiful, peaceful natural place – it has a special quality about it, equal to nowhere else.

For me, the best event held on the Island has to be The 7 Hills – a marked mountain bike race held in March, which takes you along scenic trails and seven killer hills from Freshwater Bay to Sandown Airport. It was one of my first races when I started out. It stopped for a few years but it has been brought back by popular demand, and now I help to organise the event along with Wight Mountain and GP Sport. It is a huge privilege to be a part of something so successful that encourages people, regardless of their ability, to get out there and take part in something different.”

We sponsor the Wightlink-Wight Mountain Cycle Race Team through our Wighlink in the Community scheme.

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