While I was in Sydney for round 2 of the DownUnderGround I got to spend some time with Philipp Frueh. Having only met him in February in Bridport at round 1, I got the impression that he seems to be a fun loving guy with a sense of wit and sarcasm. Having spent that time with him in Sydney and having to share a room with him for a few days my impression was right. Philipp is a fun guy to hang with and is an easy conversationalist. He sees things from the lighter side of life. Spending time with Philipp will defiantly be a worthy experience for any one. He can also ride flatland and he does so well. Enjoy this moment with Philipp with this Q&A to get more of an insight into this beer drinking BMX flatland riding beer lover. – Shaun Jarvis
What is your name? – Philipp Frueh
How old do you want people know you are? – 30+
What part and town / city are you from in Germany? – I grew up in a small town in Southwest Germany next to the black forest. Really nice scenery there. Before I moved to Australia I used to live in Stuttgart, famous for its flatland scene.
How old were you when you started to ride BMX? – Less than half of my current age.
Did you get involved into flatland straight away? – Almost. At this time everyone was riding everything. I also tried ramp riding but I was too clumsy. Crashed onto my head a couple of time so that I decided staying on the flat would be better for me. Later I started ramp riding again and now I can ride both.
You had the same bike for quite a few years, why did you not upgrade it for that long and what made you finally want to get a new updated ride. – I didn’t upgrade my bike for years because I didn’t like all these fancy flatland bikes you could get in the past. And I didn’t care about weight. Finally Grant Cruise convinced me to get a new bike by showing me his S&M LTF, which I finally bought from him. Thanks Grant, it’s a great frame.
What was the weight difference between the two bikes? – Probably a case of beer.
Do you think that weight is an important factor in flatland? – My weight or the weight of the bike? If you are too fat it might be hard to ride flatland, so you better eat McD only once a day. I think the weight of the bike is not that important. It depends what tricks you do. For a hitchhiker the weight doesn’t really matter. It might be different for all these tailwhip tricks. Don’t overestimate the influence of your bike weight, look what the people did back in the days with their heavy bikes. Spending time on your bike helps more than spending time looking for the lightest stuff.
You are originally from Germany, why did you want to move to Australia? – Cause I like Kangaroo, especially on the barbeque.
When did you move to Australia? – In September 2010. I left Germany 11 month earlier because I had to cycle all the way on my old heavy bike…
Why move to Melbourne? – I got a job here and the weather in Melbourne is almost as cold as in Germany.
At the moment you are sitting on the top of the points tally in the advance class in the DownUnderGround, how much importance do you think this has on your ability to attract the ladies? – If you wanna attract ladies you shouldn’t ride flatland…
What is your most favourite Australian slang statement or word? – Awesome Duuuuuude
Can you explain what your job description is? – Technical project manager, that means idiot for everybody and everything…
Surfing? – Great sport. You don’t even have to take a shower afterwards.
You have been around Europe to some extent and seen and experienced the different riding scenes can you share your thoughts on the difference between these and the current scene in Australia. – The scene is much smaller in Australia, but great.
Who do you regularly ride with in Melbourne? – Grant, Karl, Kit, Sean, Jimi, Damien
What motivates you in life? – BMX, surfing and party.
What is the process that you use to learn new tricks? – Practice…sleep…practice
Do you progress well in learning new tricks or is it something that you just stumble upon whilst riding. – When I was young and rode ever day I progressed very well in learning new tricks, but that has slowed down dramatically over the last couple of years.
Are you able to manage your time efficiently with work, rest and play? – Definitely not. Work is always too much, I’d like to play all time.
What is something from your childhood that you would like to share with us? – The dog of my dad’s cousin had the same name as me. And my uncle’s dog was called Whiskey.
Apart from your leisure activity’s what else are your passionate about? – Drinking beer
What would you do if you were put into a situation where you were confronted with a gang of thugs wanting to steal your bike or surf board, which one would you give up and why? – I would beat them up with my bike because I don’t wanna ding my surfboard.
Do you have any problem solving techniques that you can share that people might find helpful? – Drink more beer.
Do you have any long lasting words or statements that you feel like the world would be a better place if everyone knew what they were? – Shit more than you eat and don’t eat yellow snow…
Why do you do what you do when you do what you do? – Cause all these little men in my head tell me to do so.
All Photos – Shaun Jarvis