I don't need inspiration, it comes natural. When I was young, I used my bike as a way to wander around in my hometown and surroundings, adventure! Bike racing was a way to compete with other guys, enjoy the feeling of winning so now and then, and to explore the world. Nowadays it's a means of transport, a way to keep myself fit, to meet up with friends, and still to explore the world. On a bike saddle, to me, life is so much nicer than on a sofa, a car seat, or office chair.
Let's meet Henk
Do you like to know more about Henk and what puts him into action? In a short selection of twelve questions below we try to answer those questions for you.
My joy at FFWD
I started this carbon wheel business (in 2006) because, in my humble opinion, a set of good wheels is the best upgrade for a bike, both in terms of performance as aesthetics. I consider it as a true gift to be able to work on high quality cycling products with a bunch of nice as colleagues. We all love bikes and cycling and get happy when our customers are happy. I hope we can make many more bike riders happy with our products. I also hope my children are able to, and keen on helping me to run the business.
My history in cycling
Bought my first bike for 100 guilders, a red Peugeot, when I was 7 years old. A year later I raced my first race. Every Wednesday we had a training and every weekend we were racing. From my 15th until my 25th I trained and raced more and more. In this period, bike racing was my life. When I quit racing in 1993, I kept riding, but less fanatic and more for fun. When I turned 50 I decided to start racing again. I combine it with social riding and bike holidays.
On the road I ride a S-Works VENGE with SRAM Etap and RYOT55 wheels. Offroad I ride a Cervelo Aspero gravelbike with DRIFT wheels and an American Eagle Atlanta hardtail mountainbike with SRAM XO and Outlaw wheels.
My favorite pair of wheels
The whole RYOT family. Awesome wheels for climbing, criteriums and Sunday morning rides. Less wind sensitive than previous era carbon wheels, wider rims for wider tires add comfort, and stunning looks.
My favorite place to ride
I really love Girona (Spain). It's a beautiful region, close to the Mediterranean Sea and close to the Pyrenees. Lots of sunshine and countless small roads make it a perfect place for a bike holiday. In the evening you can walk the town and dine out.
My goals (in distance)
The past 3 years I did ride about 10.000 km's a year. This means 3 Rides a week, appr. 2,5 hours every ride, all around the year. This isn't a real goal but bikerides with fun and joy like these suits me best.
My favorite cyclist
Mathieu van der Poel. In the past riders as Jan Raas, Berhard Hinault, Jean-Paul van Poppel, Paolo Savoldelli and Jan Ullrich. On average, I like classic racers more than stage race winners. And I love to watch mass sprints. And I enjoy a good descent (Savoldelli, Sagan) more than a long steep climb.
My other interests
Nothing beats skating the frozen Dutch canals and lakes. I like to play my guitar with friends, I like to visit concerts (mostly at smaller venues), I like music in general. I also like to travel and riding my motorbikes (Honda Africa Twin and Moto Guzzi Griso). It gives me a feeling of freedom and brings me to the nicest places, it comes close to cycling but with less physical effort.
My favorite movie
I am not a real movie watcher, I rather read a book. But some of the movies I liked in the past were Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and more recently The Gentlemen. I do not watch TV either (except bike races), but I have enjoyed the Netflix serie Peaky Blinders.
My favorite music
Music is like passion to me, from ABBA to Zappa. Mostly, I like rock music. Lou Reed was my hero in my 20s. Right now I'm a fan of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (BRMC). I have great memories of live concerts of Status Quo, Billy Idol, Willy DeVille, Triggerfinger, Herman Brood, BRMC, The Waterboys, Fatal Flowers, KISS, UFO, and many more!