By now you should have heard of Kara Beal, and if you haven't, we recommend you check out her YouTube channel here.
Kara holds a commendable career as a full-time nurse, although she's slowly transitioning into a full-time MTB influencer and content creator; with a little help from her partner Tom Cardy (who also happens to be one of our Haibike Heroes). Whilst Kara is relatively new to mountain biking (having only started her eMTB journey in January 2019!) her enthusiasm for the sport shines through and it's this passion and joy for pushing her boundaries that has us hooked.
Her get-up-and-go attitude and eagerness for all things eMTB resonates strongly with us at Haibike and our core beliefs: that biking is all about freedom, courage, passion and the joy of discovery. We want to drive people to explore and expand their boundaries, uphill and downhill, and watching the way an e-bike expedites someone’s riding skill set through sheer time on the bike is truly fascinating.
We sat down for a quick chat with Kara to talk about her newfound passion for mountain biking, what it's been like expanding her eMTB boundaries and what her riding-future holds - with a few fun facts thrown in for good measure.
Get to know Kara:
Your YouTube channel has reached 18,000 subscribers this year, when you started it did you ever think it’d get so big?
Not at all! I actually started my Youtube channel so I could like and comment on Tom’s videos. I then decided to make a video of my own and everyone seemed to like it and I also really enjoyed the filming and editing side to it as well so carried on making more content!
Where is your favourite place to ride and why?
My favourite place to ride would be some fast flowy downhill trails like at Rogate Bikepark or Aston Hill. I also like riding natural trails in Wales.
We all know from your videos that you’re a biscuit fan, but what’s your favourite kind of biscuit?
I love all biscuits so it is so difficult to choose just one, but I love flapjack, not even sure if that is classed as a biscuit?!
What are your plans for 2021…?
Hopefully spend more time riding and improving my skills and also working closely with my sponsors. Also going to some cool places and riding different spots around the world!
The Work/Life/Ride balance:
What do you do for a living?
At the moment I work full time as a nurse but am hoping to ride full time soon and create even more content!
Do you cycle to work?
Not at the moment as the nights have drawn in, but in the summer months, it is such a nice ride across the countryside.
How far is your commute?
I think in total the commute is about 20 miles return.
Are you ever tempted to take the long route home to get some extra miles in?
For sure the more bike time the better!
What’s the best part about riding to work?
The fresh air and exercise are always nice especially after a long day stuck inside!
Have you noticed an increase in your colleagues riding to work?
For sure a lot more people are cycling to work which is great to see. We also have better facilities at work to be able to do this too!
Bikes, bikes and more bikes:
What bike are you currently riding?
I am currently riding the Haibike AllMtn 3.0 in the gorgeous blue colour which I love!
Is this your first EMTB?
No this isn’t my first e-bike, before this one I rode the Haibike ALLMTN 7.5 which was awesome as well!
What do you think about the size/geometry of the bike?
It is perfect! It feels good in all different types of riding from hitting jumps to going down technical downhill trails! It is easy to manoeuvre round corners and get big air on also!
What’s your favourite thing about the bike?
My favourite thing has to be turbo mode! I very rarely come out of this setting as I love how easy and fast it is to climb up hills and it is actually really fun to climb up hills as well! It is also so crazy how it can even climb up stair sets too! The battery also lasts so long in turbo mode so you can be rising for hours and having so much fun without worry the battery will die!
If you could describe the bike in 3 words, what would they be?
Fun, Stylish and Versatile!
How does riding EMTB affect your riding? Ie can you go for longer, do you still work hard?
Riding an EMTB means I can ride for longer but it also means I can get more laps in which for a beginner is really important as the more laps you get in the more practice you are getting which means in turn you should feel an improvement in your riding!
You’ve started racing! It’s a big step for most riders, tell us more: Is it scary? What are the other riders like? Does it feel pressured?
It is really nerve-racking when you first get to a race because you do feel the pressure to do well, especially as I vlog my races I don’t want to get a bad result and let anyone down! But once the first lap is out the way the nerves disappear and I really enjoy myself and get stuck in! The other riders are really nice and a lot of people go and take part because they have seen the videos and want to give it a try themselves which is super nice and rewarding to see.