We are British Cycling - we are bike commuters - Dave Parsons


Dave is Purchasing and Equipment Manager for the Great Britain Cycling Team; the man charged with the task of ensuring that our elite riders have all the equipment they require to do their jobs effectively - i.e. win medals, be awesome, etc. Five days a week, rain or shine, the ever-smiling Dave is brought to us by the letters B, M and X, which is pretty awesome in itself.

Dave Parsons, Great Britain Cycling Team Purchasing and Equipment Manager, with his BMX commuting bike!Name: Dave Parsons.

Workplace: Great Britain Cycling Team - Purchasing and Equipment Manager

Tell us about your commuting rig: Currently my Crupi XL Pro BMX, it handles like a dream and is by far the most fun of all my bikes to ride over the short distance into work.

What’s your commute like?

My current commute is flat, short, and runs primarily along the Manchester & Ashton-Under-Lyne canal between Piccadilly and Eastlands. Being off the public highway I initially chose this route on the grounds of safety, I have however had to learn to deal with a whole new battery of potential hazards including rogue dogs, rogue Canadian Geese, rogue Asda shopping trolleys and rogue Manchester City supporters.

How many days a week do you commute by bike?

Every day, 5 days a week.

What do you enjoy the most about bike commuting?

That I can reach my place of work under my own efforts and at my own speed by engaging in one of the only activities that gives much more than it takes.

What’s your least favourite thing about commuting by bike?

The realisation the ride is over.

What are your main reasons to commute by bike?

Pleasure first, health second, expense a very distant third.

Have you got any funny or interesting bike commuting stories or experiences to share?

Whilst living (and cycle-commuting) in London I was once driven into and knocked off my bike by a well-known Member of Parliament. What struck me, shortly after his car, was his display of concern and humility, which oddly enough correlated exactly with the duration necessary to establish that neither my bike nor I had suffered any serious harm.

What’s your killer commuting tip?

After 18 years of commuting it's impossible to offer one killer commuting tip, but I'd certainly say the following thoughts/strategies are those I try to embody:-

Firstly, keep it interesting, choose different routes, if possible ride different bikes.

Secondly, at all times attempt to ride defensively and assertively, but always acknowledge that your primary responsibility is keeping yourself safe; there's no point in winning the legal and moral arguments if you end up in hospital.

Thirdly, always cycle as if you're representing all cyclists; like it or not your riding does the talking not just for you but for every other cyclist on the road, and if cycling is to be fully accepted by other road users then all of us have our part to play.

Fourthly, when other road-users claim not to have seen you my suspicion is that they aren't lying, so stay one step ahead of trouble and always assume beforehand they in fact haven't.

And finally....... Enjoy it, whatever the conditions.

Are you a British Cycling Member? If so how does your British Cycling membership support your bike commuting?

Yes, by increasing awareness of cycling amongst other road users and our society at large, whilst providing a sense of unity and solidarity to all us cyclists.

Send us your Commuter Profile!

We want to know about your commuting experiences; how far you go, why you choose to ride, your killer tips and your commuter grumbles. Download, complete and email back your commuter profile to editor@britishcycling.org.uk and tell your story. Feel free to include a photograph/photographs of you and your trusty commuting bike!

Download Commuter Profile Form (Word Document)

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