Veronique Sandler is fast becoming a superstar in the mountain bike world. Hailing from deep in the Welsh valleys, her social media feed is constantly inspiring people to get out and better themselves. Whether it's slaying turns in the local woods or hitting up big mountains in Europe, this girl is constantly pushing the limits on two wheels.
In her biggest project to date, Vero builds the mountain bike jump line of her dreams while taking us on a journey to explain who and what inspires her to keep striving to improve.
To watch the full movie click here
Describe your MTB journey, and how you got to this point right now? Other disciplines, influences as a youngsters etc?
I started out riding MTB when I was 13 and lived back in NZ; my brother, Leo, had started going out riding with some of his mates and it sounded like fun so I joined them for a few rides and quickly became hooked! We would just session little jumps and have a laugh, it was sick! Not too long after I started racing some local DH races which progressed onto nationals, and then world cups. I raced world cups for five years. It got to a stage where I wasn't really enjoying it anymore. Nerves were getting the better of me and my results werent progressing so at the end of 2016 I decided to take a year out and go back to where it all started; sessioning jumps and riding for fun! I started documenting some parts of my sessions through videos on my instagram, and thats how I've got to where I am now. Companies started approaching me with video/ sponsorship requests and I'm so stoked that this is now my job!
What keeps you motivated and stoked to ride each day? Training can be hard and lonely sometimes so what drives you?
I'm pretty much always motivated because I am living my absolute dream life and there isn't anything I'd rather be doing. I can never get out of the house quickly enough to go and ride! Training for me is a personal choice, I don't really compete so some people say theres no need to train. But in the winter especially, I looove going to the gym and smashing a session out. I just really enjoy it so that keeps me going back!
What are you riding right now?
At the moment I'm riding my custom Marin Mount Vision which I was surprised with by my awesome sponsors for my latest video project 'Vision Movie'. Its got a special one off red and purple paint job with parts to match. Its my first ever custom bike and I love it so much! Sometimes i feel bad taking it out for a ride cos its too pretty haha!
Living in South Wales, you are pretty spoilt with fresh riding spot. I guess that’s why you moved here right? What else drew you to Wales?
I lived in Bristol for a couple of years prior to moving over here, and I pretty much spent as many days as I could afford driving over to south Wales to go riding anyway, so I thought it just made sense! I love it over here, I find the chilled way of life is very similar to where I'm from in NZ, and the riding is off the charts! Every single hill is covered in trails.
You’ve been all over the World and ridden your bike in so many events, but are there any (events) that are on your bucket list? Why?
To be honest, I don't have much interest in competing in any events. I raced and had that 'race mindset' for so many years and I could never really work it out. I feel like my riding has progressed ten times more in two years of not racing, than it did in 5-6 years of racing nationals and world cups. I do enjoy doing the odd fun race here and there, but I'm really enjoying progressing as a rider without comparing myself to others and competing with myself to improve instead!
We are so stoked to be supporting Vero and can't wait to see what she works on next! Keep it lit V!
Photos by Andy Lloyd