19 Interesting Things about Daniel Carruthers (aka Bikedan in Asia) you may not know
I started my blog with the aim of bringing interesting stories and tips to my readers from all over the world. My goal is to provide a platform where friends and colleagues can not only keep up with my adventures around the globe, but also be a site where travelers and other fellow cyclists can assimilate valuable tips and ideas.
Another reason for establishing this site is to provide exposure for my sponsors. Sponsors who have supported me over the years in my Quest to be the best cyclist I possibly can to compete at the elite-level. Please take some time and look at my sponsor page and click through to their websites to check out their product offerings. Without their support, I would not have realized my dream of racing at the semi-pro level and all over the world. I have proudly represented New Zealand at the 2006 World Deaf Cycling Championships in San Francisco, the 2009 Deaflympics in Taipei and the 2013 Deaflympics in Bulguria where I won the prestigious road race only to be stripped of the gold medal due to deviation in my sprint.
Thanks to my regular readers who have supported me over the years and also a warm welcome is extended to new visitors. Please interact with my site by leaving some comments: either suggestions on new places to ride or what you would like to see on my site.
To get to know me a little bit better, I have shared 18 things below:
- Started my own New Zealand based business in September 2016 to coincide with the birth of my son Ethan, and named the cycling business Green Monkey since it was also the Chinese Year of the Monkey. The GreenMonkey story can be read here: GreenMonkey back story.
- Marketing Manager for the Timber Trail, one of New Zealand’s 22 Great Rides and continue to manage DJC Media – my PR and Marketing company.
- CHAPTER2 Ambassador and continue to #EXPLOREROADSLESSTRAVELLED
- I am over 80% deaf in both ears since I was an infant – but have never let this handicap prevent me from living life to its fullest. I wear two powerful behind the ear Hansaton Hearing Aids and am totally reliant on them – without them I cannot hear anything, have to rely on my lip-reading skills!
- For recognition of my outstanding achievements and role-model status, I won the Inaugural NFD Quest for Excellence Scholarship in 2004. Also won the Deaf Achiever of the Year in 1991 as a high school student.
- In 2014, was awarded the Deaf Sports Person of the Year Award for my sporting achievements, especially the 2013 Deaflympics in Bulgaria and competing at the elite level in Belgium and all over Asia.
- I’m from the Land of the Long White Cloud, New Zealand – more specifically I am from Dunedin, a beautiful coastal city in the South Island. I also spent a lot of time living in Auckland when growing up and more recently. Our current city is Rotoura – NZ.
- Since 1997, I have spent most of my time abroad living in various countries including Israel, St Helena, China and the United States. Returning to NZ from 2004 to 2008. Now that we have a 20 month old son, we’ve been living in New Zealand permanently since early 2016.
- In 2005 I decided to train seriously to compete at the elite level under the guidance of coach Nick Flyger. I was part of an elite squad of NZ rep mountain bikers and felt out of place as I was just a beginner. With dedication to Nick’s training regime I quickly improved and found my niche in criterium racing.
- Have raced Tour of Southland twice – in 2006 and in 2014. I hope to make it back to that amazing race for a third time.
- I have several degrees, all are from Otago University: Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing Management/design (1995), Diploma of Tourism (1997), Bachelor of Arts in Chinese (2004), Master of Tourism (2007). Completed course work for my Tourism PHD at Zhejiang University in China from 2010-2014.
- Sketching is one of my passionate hobbies and when I have the chance you will find me sketching beautiful character buildings steeped in history. I have sketched around the world on a commission basis.
- Freelance writer. Some publications include: Cycling News, Daily Peloton, Bike Radar, Texas Racing Post, NZ Endurance Magazine, Bicycle Retailer, Cycling News Asia, Velonews, and Road Cycling NZ. Mostly cycling related stories.
- Fluent in Mandarin (currently taking additional classes to raise to new level). I say fluent to the degree that I can communicate effectively in Mandarin, but due to limitations sometimes my listening skills are not fantastic – this is something that I am working hard on. I am now teaching my 20 month old son to speak Mandarin, in fact it is the only language I use to communicate with him in and he is now just starting to really understand what I am actually saying!
- Photography and writing are two passions of mine and I need to re-kindle this, having let it lapse for a while since getting busy with other projects. Plus I am interested in learning more about videography.
- I use PowerTap P1 Pedals for training. Training with power has improved my cycling dramatically, making this a much better investment than a set of carbon race wheels!
- In 2004, I cycled to 23 Sister Cities in China that had a relationship with New Zealand. This was for my Masters thesis research – “Sister City Relationships between China and NZ – implications for Tourism Development”. PDF can be found on the Economic Development Agencies of NZ website (link above).
- One of my favorite places in the world is St Helena – the remotest place on earth accessible only by sea via the last Royal Mail Ship in the world, it is also the island where Napoleon Bonaparte was exiled to after losing the Battle of Waterloo. I lived there for six months and did over 100 pieces of artwork of the Island and helped with various tourism and conservation projects. It is my dream to return there again at some point.
- A brief encounter 10 years ago resulted in meeting the love of my life, a beautiful Texan, Jennifer Roberts. After dating for two years, we were married on July 4th 2009. She is a novice rider (rides a cute Orbea Aqua), and has been the inspiration for some of my popular stories.