I have a crush on Ryan Leech! One of the world's top "trials" riders, the British Columbia-based cyclist balances on insanely small surfaces on his bike tires and does jumps on a variety of obstacles, many high off the ground. A Norco Factory Team member, Ryan has performed for the Cirque du Soleil, the Van's Warped Tour, and many outdoor and mountain bike shows.
Year after year, when I watch him in person at the Sea Otter Classic or in his many films, the Canadian cycling specialist wows me with both his bicycle stunts (trials riding) and his mission to inspire and educate kids. There are many talented riders in all cycling disciplines, but few I have met during my career as a cycling/adventure journalist are as articulate and passionate as Ryan about kids. At Sea Otter he chats easily with the audience on a wireless microphone while doing his amazing stunts.
Ryan said about Sea Otter: "I like to push my show riding to leave the audience feeling psyched to go out and ride bikes, whatever style that may be." (Source: Sea Otter press release).
He already has a wife named "Caryn," so I will just go and watch him again at Sea Otter Classic. See you there!
The 19th Annual Sea Otter Classic, April 16-19, 2009 happens at the Laguna Seca Recreation Area, Monterey, Calif. The four-day "Celebration of Sport" is considered the world's largest cycling festival, hosting nearly 10,000 professional and amateur athletes and 50,000 fans.