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Meet our guide leader, Sammy Munday

When and why did you start to ride? And to race?

I have always been passionate about all things sport and have always been actively involved in a variety of sports for as long as I can remember. My first memory of cycling was riding up and down the street, back and forth until I was too tired to continue.

I loved the freedom of being on a bike and the ability to explore. Growing up with this passion, I continued to enjoy the bike more, whether on a BMX or a mountain bike.

My father was a passionate cyclist and inspired my older brother in his young teens to start cycling more. I was quick to follow my father’s lead and also took up road cycling in my early teens. My passion only grew stronger and soon I started to race in local junior races. This was the start of many years of racing, which eventually led me to achieve my dream: to be a professional cyclist.

Do you still love it?

Absolutely! Cycling is my passion and always will be. I live and breathe it and am grateful to be able to experience the joy a bicycle brings. To me, cycling is so unique and special in many ways. It brings people together and is something which can be enjoyed by everyone, regardless of age and ability. I must say I have lost a little bit of love for pure racing, however my love for cycling now, could not be greater!

Which other thing do you like more than riding?

Coffee and cooking.

I have a big passion for coffee culture and really enjoy experimenting, tasting and sharing a good coffee.

However, I’d consider myself a big foodie and love to cook. I find the process of cooking therapeutic and it provides me an outlet to explore my creativity. I enjoy the whole process of sourcing good-quality, fresh, clean foods and experimenting with flavours, textures, and methods of cooking.

Choose a colour. Is this the colour of your bike?

Blue. My favourite colour (as most people can probably tell) is navy blue.

For a bike however, I love white. I think white it is super classy and elegant, and allows for other colours to take precedence.

What is your favourite route to ride in winter? And in summer?

In Winter if I’m in Girona, I love the Olot loop. The Garrotxa area is beautiful and pure. I feel like I can disconnect when riding out this way, especially on a cold spring morning or a beautiful clear winter’s day.

In Summer, I love the Sant Hilari-Arbúcies-Girona loop. The views are stunning and the sensation of climbing in the humidity is the best.

Sunrise or sunset?

I love sunrise. I’ve always been a morning person, so it has to be sunrise.

One great memory of you and your bike?

I have so many great memories of me and my bike, it is hard to decide. However, if I had to narrow it down to one, I would say it was a ride I did with my father on the Sunshine Coast in Australia this January. We rode together along the beautiful rolling coastal side roads as the sun rose across the ocean. The weather was perfect, no cars in sight and a cool light breeze blew. Enjoying this moment, after not seeing him in almost two years due to Covid was something truly special. He is the reason I started to cycle and encouraged and supported me to pursue my dreams to race as a professional. So to be able to share a moment like this with him on the bike was very memorable.

And the worst one...?

This is certainly the crash I had in Italy in 2020. I was in the best shape of my life leading into the restart of races following the Covid-19 lockdowns. I was descending a hill at a training camp in Italy, where I collided at high pace into a car. I was airlifted to Bolzano hospital with severe, life threatening injuries. I sustained serious pelvic injuries, collapsed lung, broken ribs, head trauma, shattered collarbone...just to name a few injuries. Ultimately, I did not know if I would be able to ride a bike again, however I was just so grateful to be alive.

I don’t often talk about it with others, as I get quite emotional about it. However, I can honestly say that my perspective on life changed that day, ultimately in a positive way.

What is your goal for this year?

My goal is to share my experiences and knowledge from cycling and build upon my passion for cycling through other channels. I want to be involved within the local community and encourage more people to experience why cycling is so special.

One sentence to inspire our cyclists.

Never let others doubt you or stop you from pursuing your dreams, no matter how out of reach they appear to be.

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