Brixton Cycles isn’t any old bike shop. Coming from all walks of life, we’re a passionate bunch who share a love for bikes and serving the Brixton community. With such a diverse and experienced crew, there's no shortage of unique and fascinating stories to be told.
Meet Mariusz: lifelong cyclist, retro MTB enthusiast & all-round great guy. When he isn’t manning the shop front or servicing bikes, you can find Mariusz tinkering with some kind of 90s 26er MTB. We sat down for a chat to find out more about Mariusz’s cycling story, so let’s dive in!
How did you get into cycling?
I've been on two wheels since I was a kid! It all started with playing around with bikes – my parents got me my first bike when I was just three, which my dad eventually upgraded to a folding bike with 20-inch wheels when I was five (it wasn’t the easiest thing to get around on for a five-year-old, but he pushed me around on it until I could ride it myself!). From there, whether it was riding or just tinkering, I've always had a bike in my life – from leisurely riding, commuting, or venturing into gravel day trips, I was hooked since day one!
What has kept you cycling all these years?
Riding, touring, and restoring bikes never gets old – I simply love it! I've always been into anything with two wheels, be it bicycles or motorcycles (I’m just running on pedal power at the moment though!). While I do own road bikes, I’ve never really been one for racing or competing. Touring and exploring is my thing – venturing to new places and immersing myself in the local countryside. Most of my bikes are geared towards off/on-road long-distance riding and bikepacking.
How did you get into the bike trade?
Cycling had always been a hobby for me, but about four years ago, I joined the Brixton Cycles team. I used to come here often to check out touring bikes like Surly, which I had always wanted for those long-distance adventures. I did test rides on Surlys, and one thing led to another. Before that, I was pursuing a career in photography, while balancing various other jobs but it wasn't as sustainable as I had hoped. Joining Brixton Cycles has given me more security, and I get to combine my love for bikes with my work here at Brixton while still doing photography as more of a hobby – it’s a win win!
What do you like most about working at Brixton Cycles?
As a bike tinkerer, getting to work on a wide variety of bikes is a big plus. We’ve got a busy workshop here at Brixton, but even if it gets hectic and a bit stressful with repairs, it’s always good fun. The best part is that I work with brands I genuinely like, whether it’s Surly, Salsa, or anything chromoly really! It's a pleasure to work on bikes that I'm genuinely passionate about, plus, I'm constantly learning and facing new challenges as new bikes come into the shop.
What would you do if you weren’t in the cycling trade?
I can’t imagine myself not being in the bike trade these days – I'd still want to be involved with bicycles in some way or another! Maybe I'll have my own bike restoration business one day, and I'd also definitely continue pursuing my photography passion alongside it. For me, it's essential to be passionate about what I do, not just chasing money.
What’s your best day out on the bike?
Any day I'm out in the countryside is a great day out on the bike for me! Exploring new places, releasing the stress of city life, and just soaking in the natural beauty. I love riding around the Kent countryside and riding down to the coast. Back home in Poland, I have fond memories of cycling around the lakes and woodlands on gravel rides with my friends – riding round here reminds me of that.
Unfortunately I don’t have much time for riding at the moment (other than the daily commute!), so most of my energy is put into building new projects!
Any exciting cycling events/adventures coming up?
Well, I'm considering taking my trusty Cannondale bikepacking in Gran Canaria, but nothing's set in stone yet. It's on my radar, though!
Find out more about Mariusz chrome Cannondale here!
Do you have a favourite bike?
Ah, that's a tough question. I have quite a few bikes, and they're all different, each with its own charm. But if I had to pick one I use the most, it would be my trusty Cannondale. It's been my reliable companion on many journeys. Recently, I've been enjoying the Surly Krampus for off-road bikepacking trips while on holiday back home, too. My bike collection is quite extensive, so I might have to consider selling some at some point!
Check out Mariusz’s trusty chrome Cannondale in Part 3 of ‘The Crew’s Commuters’ here!
Visit our blog to meet the other members of our team in our ‘Team Stories’ series here. Keep an eye on our blog for future editions to find out more about our crew!