4th in US Road National Championships, 9th Leadville 100 MTB
Meet Alexey Vermeulen, the 26-year-old dachshund-loving former WorldTour racer turned gravel aficionado from Boulder, Colorado. Though he started his career on skinny tires, he traded his standings in the WorldTour for dirt and knobby tires in 2018. But he doesn’t just ride bikes: He inspires others to try their hand at racing, thanks to his latest project, From the Ground Up. He joins Jukebox with a full schedule for 2022, including the Life Time Grand Prix six-race series and two big events for From the Ground Up… plus some road racing, because despite doing many of his training miles with a dachshund on his back, he still has a need for speed.
Rapid fire round:
Weirdest bike riding experience: Riding seven hours with my mini-dachshund, Sir Willie the Weiner, in his backpack with me. I love riding with him: if you are riding on a bike path, people yell at you for riding too fast. But then they apologize if you have a dog on your back. Or if you're descending and someone's climbing and they see the dog’s ears flopping backwards in the wind, it makes them smile. And if there's anything that you can do to make people smile, it's beneficial.
Top 3 desert island staples: My dachshund Willie, of course. And carrots. I love carrots. And a jet ski. I grew up on a lake, and I loved to jet ski. I can just imagine me riding off into the sunset with Willie. Hopefully I could tuck him inside my shirt. Or do I not have a shirt? Assuming I have pants, I'll tie the pants around my neck and make a little holder for Willie. That's all that matters.
“Ride up” song: The Four Seasons (Winter) from Vivaldi. My birthday is the same as Beethoven’s, so I played violin growing up, and I also got a classical music CD every year. At first, it was really annoying. But then I started actually listening to those CDs on long, boring rides, and found that I really loved it. Now, Avery—my videographer friend—and I are playing around with using more classical music in projects. It has more character, more elegance.