In the Saddle with Ali Goulet, Cyclocrosser, Enduro Racer & Former Pro Snowboarder – Aiming for Worlds
Ali Goulet, pro snowboarder and cyclocrosser, has been in and out of our sport for quite some time. We profiled him back in Issue 8, but last season, he remained off of our radar. We wanted to find out what this pro was doing, and what caused him to sign up for Midsummer Nights Cyclocross last week.
Cyclocross Magazine: What are your plans for the 2012 cyclocross season?
Ali Goulet: I plan to tool up for Masters Worlds, not sure if I’ll participate in Nats due to the proximity of it to Worlds and related travel. I’ll be racing for Look Cycles on their new X85! I’m racing as an Elite this season, mostly just to get Look exposure in that field, but we know I won’t looking to score any UCI points as it would effect my eligibility for Masters Worlds.
CXM: What prompted you to do Midsummer Night Cross?
AG: Honestly, just because it exists and I like racing my ’cross bike. I didn’t plan on having any ’cross specific form at that time.
CXM: What do you think of Jonathan Page moving to Utah?
AG: He will be a welcome edition to our scene and if I can take advantage of him having a mechanical, I’ll be able to say I beat him once.
CXM: Does the shift in Nationals scheduling impact you a lot, since you also snowboard?
AG: These days I only shred rad for fun, so no real conflict.
CXM: In 2011 we didn’t see many results from you: you didn’t travel to the big races or Nats. What prompted you to take the year off?
AG: I had been heavily focused on racing bikes for 10 years and my 2009 US Grand Prix bid asked a lot from my family in regards to my travel and training time. I had plans to race a full road schedule for 2010 and participate in Tour of Utah with a local Utah team. When I realized the strain it would put on family life, I lost motivation and had no immediate goals. For a while, I was bummed because I missed racing but had no desire to ride the bike. I completely switched to riding freeride downhill; it is very much like snowboarding. I sold my roadie, XC bike and all my ’cross gear. Last year I actually skateboarded four days a week and wouldn’t touch my bike for weeks at a time. This year though, I’ve fallen in love with Enduro and Super D, I’m using the motivation from that to build base for a ’cross season.
CXM: What motivated you to make a comeback this season and go for the Masters title?
AG: Mostly it has been the support of my friends at Easton-Bell Sports, Look Cycles and the Utah ’cross community. I had to wait for the internal desire to crush souls, finally this year it has returned.
CXM: Do skills for ’cross and from snowboarding translate?
AG: Absolutely, for me it is all about line choice and reading the terrain
CXM: What about mentally: does racing one help the other?
AG: Yes and no, in the end it all comes down to developing the skill set and having the confidence to implement it.
CXM: We’ve seen snowboarding become mainstream with Shawn White, the Olympics, and the X-Games. Can cyclocross learn anything from the growth that snowboarding saw?
AG: Perhaps, ’cross is such a great spectator sport and has all the potential to become an Olympic or X-Game event.
CXM: Would you want it to?
AG: Why not? Olympics would be great for ’cross and would also be a interesting spectacle for Winter X
CXM: What happened to your online reality show? And what do you think of Jeremy Powers’ Behind THE Barriers?
AG: I got a little toasted putting out 13 episodes within a three month period. I do have a couple new episodes on deck and will be producing regular edits during ’cross season called Over The Barriers … Just kidding. JPow is a character and I definitely enjoy his episodes!
CXM: How much time do you spend on your cyclocross bike in the off-season?
AG: Zero – I don’t like to get over excited about cross in the off-season.
CXM: How long have you been racing?
AG: Bikes since I was 14 but cross only since 2001.
CXM: How did you get into cyclocross?
AG: I was getting back into riding bikes in 2000 and was looking for events to race, it was late fall and ’cross was the only option. I had always thought ’cross looked cool but never had the opportunity to race. Once I started, it just made so much sense
CXM: Best part of cyclocross for you?
AG: I love railing the skinny knobs off road; it is as close as I get to being a rally car driver
CXM: Proudest cyclocross moment?
AG: The first time I beat Bart Gillespie. Bart is an 11 time winner of the Utah Cyclocross series and has finished as high as seventh in Elite CX Nats; he doesn’t suck
CXM: Favorite thing to do after a race?
AG: Eat ice cream and drink an Epic Brewing ’Cross Fever amber ale, not in that order
CXM: Advice for people just getting into the sport?
AG: Come join the fun and don’t be intimidated, we’re a super welcoming bunch … Oh, and read CXM
CXM: Where would you like to see the sport go?
AG: I just like to see it keep gaining popularity. If Americans can endure hours of TDF coverage on NBC, they would love one hour of some really exciting cycling.
CXM: What’s unique about racing in Utah?
AG: Dust and Goat Heads … I think that is all
CXM: Is cyclocross your main focus?
AG: Enduro for summer and yes, ’cross for fall/winter
CXM: Best pre-race song to listen to?
AG: 2 Live Crew – Me So Horny
CXM: Little known fact about you?
AG: I’m responsible for all the sewing for my household.
CXM: Most embarrassing bike moment?
AG: When I was 15, I cried at a crit cause I got shelled.
CXM: What’s your ideal course?
AG: Something technical, preferably covered in snow and ice.
CXM: Best pre and post race food
AG: Sprouted grain bagel with peanut butter and bananas for breakfast, PROBAR two hours out and secret per race drink.
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