2014 was a belter of a year for Sven: New major sponsor and his first Ride to Glory on a team with his good friends. It all came into place but not simply by chance; Sven has a super fluid style which is very pleasing to watch. He also has a positive attitude, is always pushing it and it’s clear he thoroughly enjoys being on a bike, whether it’s at the trails, skatepark or on the streets. This guy can click one hell of a table too...
I caught up with Sven to talk about his past year, riding on camera, trip plans and some of the carnage that went down during RTG14.
Photos kindly provided by Archetype BMX ©
Living in: Derby
Years riding: 14
Sponsors: Premium BMX UK, Archetype BMX and Mode BMX.
Bike set-up: Premium CK Frame, Premium CK Bars, Premium FYB Forks, Premium 2 piece Cranks, Premium V3 Top Load Stem, Premium Plastic Pedals, Premium Pivotal Seat, Premium CK red wall Tyres. Front Wheel: BSD Street Hub, Fly Pyramid Rim. Rear Wheel: Odyssey Antigram Hub, Odyssey Midway.
Food/ drink: Anything my mum cooks!
Music: Hip Hop
Riding style? Ride everything!
Favourite riders? (to watch) Dennis Enarson, Simone Barraco, Sam Marden, Mat Roe, Broc Raiford, Sean Sexton, Chris Doyle and Lahsaan Kobza.
Favourite riders? (to ride with) Karl Feix, Sam Pyle, Sam Marden, Matt Roe, Rob Andrews. There's too many, basically anyone I ride with!
Best edit or riding section: Dennis Enarson's Demolition Last Chance section
Local riding spot: Long Eaton/Asylum
motto: Whomp there it is!
Trails, street or park? Trails
Why do you ride? Because it’s fun!
“Mole attempting the five pints in 15 minutes then do the walk screaming hell yeah challenge, in the middle of a quiet pub in our onesies, hands down the funniest thing I've seen.”
Hi Sven, welcome to getabmx! How’s 2015 treating you so far?
Yoo!! 2015 is going good so far! Too many good times already, keep them coming!
2014 was a big year for you, getting onto the Premium team and going on your first Ride to Glory. What were the year’s highlights for you?
Yeah 2014 was crazy, I never thought I'd get to go on Ride to Glory so that was pretty rad! Some real good memories from that, definitely one of the best highlights of the year for me. Other than that I started my new job this year and I've met some rad people from that. 2014 was amazing, loved every minute of it!
So how did the Premium deal come about?
Basically I've known Rob Andrews (Premium UK team manager) for years and we've always been friends. One day he asked me to join the team, and since some of my good friends were already on the team, it wasn't a hard decision. It just feels right, all the guys are rad on and off their bikes.
Has the move had an impact on your riding? Like has it made you any more committed to progress and has it affected how you ride at all?
Oh hell yeah!! When I first got out on my Premium setup I just wanted to show I deserved a spot on a team full of shredders, especially for RTG. I think that pushed me to progress a lot more. I don't think it's changed my riding at all, I've always tried to ride everything.
What’s it like being on the same team and going on trips with the likes of Mole (Chris Smith) and Brad (McNicol)? Any wild riding or trip experiences you’d like to share?
It's so good being on the same team as Brad and Mole. I've known them for a while before I joined the team. It's always rad to get to spend time with them and to be able to go on trips with your friends is always a bonus! Mole attempting the five pints in 15 minutes then do the walk screaming hell yeah challenge, in the middle of a quiet pub in our onesies, hands down the funniest thing I've seen. Mole you’re the man!
“... give it another year or two and there won't be as much of the 'slow and technical' style of riding.”
RTG14 was your first RTG right? Was it how you expected?
Yeah it was my first one, and it definitely was not how I expected, it beat any expectations I had. Good people + good spots = a amazing time.
What were the hardest and craziest challenges (both riding and non riding) you did and witnessed?
The beer bong challenge whilst sitting on someone's bars while riding down a double set. Probably the craziest challenge I witnessed and for sure the hardest I'd have to say is Moles street flip, the setup we found wasn't the best at all but he managed to send it. Like I said Mole is the man!
I’m sure a bunch of stuff didn’t go to plan on the trip. Can you share some memories of things that went wrong, set-backs and ’oh shit’ moments that are funny to look back on now?
To be honest not a lot didn't go to plan. Other than traffic we didn't really have any set-backs but watching Connor Lodes try an over oppo toothpick on a 18ft flat bank at G spot and fall from the top onto his head was definitely an 'Oh shit' moment! Glad he was able to walk away from that one!
What are you looking forward to the most at this year’s RTG?
Unfortunately Premium won't be in this years RTG as we didn't win the trip, so hopefully we get invited back another year!
“If it wasn't for Karl (Feix) I don't think I'd of made it this far in BMX, we just feed off each other all the time!”
Describe a perfect day
I guess middle of summer, get everyone together and ride all day then hit the pub in the evening with all the homies! That would be a rad day!
What are your interests outside of BMX?
I love my job as a fabricator, I've also always been heavily into music, and motorbikes are a huge influence on my life also, and I guess just the general partying and hanging with friends!
As a rider from a trails background, what do you think of the trend of slow and technical street riding? Does it bother you that that’s how the majority of people ride BMX nowadays?
It doesn't really bother me that much. BMX is BMX there are no rules, just ride what you want! BMX has changed a lot since I started but that's just progression, plus I've noticed over the years that there seems to be trends in BMX, give it another year or two and there won't be as much of the 'slow and technical' style of riding. As long as you enjoy riding then who cares what you ride!
You’ve done a lot of filming for Archetype BMX. How’s that collaboration going, how has it been filming with those guys?
Yeah! Ze is one rad guy! I grew up being the younger rider to Ze and all the other Derby shredders so we've known each other for a long time and I'm stoked to be reppin' his clothes. I always love filming with the team, always a real good vibe.
It must be fun having Karl on the team too, you guys go way back don’t you? Didn’t you grow up riding together?
Yeah for sure! Ze texted me outa the blue and asked if me and Karl would ride for Archetype, I was sat next to Karl at the time and there was no question about it! Yeah we've been friends for at least ten years, partner in crime I guess haha. If it wasn't for Karl I don't think I'd of made it this far in BMX, we just feed off each other all the time. Love that dude!
“Me and Karl have been saying for a real long time that we need to head over to the south of France and ride some trails over there, other than that we are gonna try and get down to our spot and finish what we started!”
Last winter I saw you and some mates built a set of trails. What’s the story here, are you still digging at that spot this winter or have you moved on?
Spending over eight months digging at our old spot and having one test session before they got plowed killed our motivation to dig, but we tried anyway. We ended up back at my original spot where I started riding, we built a few jumps and berms but we all had a lot on in 2014 and just could never find the time to go down, we should really get back down there.
We didn’t see you at Monkey Bumps in 2014. Do you plan to drop by this year? And do you have any other trails related plans like spots you’d like to visit and trails trips ideas?
I know! We kept saying that we need to head over and have a session but with getting a new job at the start of the summer and RTG and all the other events going on we kinda just skipped past trails season this year. Me and Karl have been saying for a real long time that we need to head over to the south of France and ride some trails over there, other than that we are gonna try and get down to our spot and finish what we started.
What spots and countries are on your wish list of places to ride and visit and why?
That's a hard one! Ive been invited over to visit Connor Lodes in San Diego so I shouldn't pass that opportunity up. There's some lose plans to head over to Malaga with Archetype so I'm looking forward to that, just for the new bowl and trails! Other than that anywhere I can go to ride!
“it's such a better vibe filming than riding in comps in my opinion, especially with Nick and Ze!”
What are your plans for this year? Any trips and video projects lined up?
The main plan for this year is to enjoy it, ride a lot and try and travel as much as possible I guess. Malaga with the Archetype boys at some point. I'm always filming, Not for any reason other than I enjoy filming! Once I've got enough decent clips for an edit then I'll release it. Got some ideas with the Derby crew as well so keep your eyes peeled for that.
Why do you like filming so much?
I don't know really, I think it pushes me a little more, like if the camera’s not out then I'll just chill, maybe do a couple of things but if the camera comes out then I try and do stuff I don't usually do, or say if I've been thinking about something for a while, I'll wait until I can get it filmed. If I'm gonna do it then it might as well be on camera, even if I don't make it haha. I think it gives me a reason to try stuff as well. It's also such a better vibe filming than riding in comps in my opinion, especially with Nick (Armstrong) and Ze (Ahmad)! It's just having fun with your mates at the end of the day!
I know what you're saying man, being filmed definitely makes you want to push it more, and if you crash then it's pretty lols to look back on haha.
Yeah exactly man!
Thanks a lot for taking the time to do this interview! Is there anything you’d like to add – shout-outs, wise words etc before you go?
Not a problem! I would like to thank every one of my friends and family for all the support, and Rob Andrews, Gav at Mode, Jack at Asylum, Sam Pyle for driving me everywhere, BDS, Nick Armstrong, Premium UK, Archetype BMX and Mode BMX.