Manon Carpenter
Manon Carpenter

Manon Carpenter is a Madison/Saracen team rider, former Junior World Champ, and the third placed rider in last year’s DH World Cup.


Words by Ali Todd.

What have you been doing since we last saw you covered in paint for Run To The Hills feature?

I haven't been turned into a Smurf again that's for sure! Before training kicked in I enjoyed having time to myself – mainly riding bikes, seeing friends and having adventures including a messy trip back from London on the Megabus after a night out! Now I'm fully into training and trying to make the most of each week, it seems like there's hardly anytime before the race season kicks off again.

You also headed out to Malaga for some winter sun?

Yeah I couldn't resist. I hadn't planned on going away as I had plenty to do at home but when the forecast says 25ºc and sun it's hard to say no. There's a new concrete skatepark been built there by Ruben Alcantara, I'd seen photos and I really wanted to ride it, as well as dirt jumps and a final swim in the sea. A perfect week to be honest.

And riding a lot of skateparks as well? Was heading indoors your answer to losing the sun in Malaga?

Well my dad has just built an indoor skatepark, Rampworld Cardiff so it’s amazing to have it just down the road. I have been riding MTB loads as well but as it gets dark outside early there's plenty of playtime left indoors. I've missed having a park to ride in the winter months so I'm happy we've got a good scene in South Wales again.

Are we losing you to motocross, or is it just a bit of off–season training?

Nah I'd be way too scared to race motocross. I do love it though, first time I got back on my motorbike at the end of the season I couldn't stop grinning... Until the next morning! It doesn't half tear your muscles up when you're not used to it.

Any more plans before this coming season?

We've got a couple of team camps in Europe for February and March, which I'm looking forward to. I'm really excited for this season, I've been with Madison Saracen since the start and every year the team steps up another level. I can't wait to see what we can do this year.