Ever wondered what it's like to work in the bike industry? Rachael Walker from Hope Tech shared some of her insights during her takeover of BikeRadar's Instagram account this week, and by all accounts it's not a bad place to be!
Surrounded by shiny bike parts, marketing a British component brand and plenty of riding — we're ever so slightly jealous.
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Walker took over the BikeRadar Instagram account for one day to give us an insight into her daily routine, what drives her passion for cycling and her work setting up Hopetech Women.
About Hope Technology
Hope Technology is a parts and components company based in Barnoldswick, England. It makes everything from road and mountain bike brakes to lights, hubs, cranks and wheels, often in a rainbow of different colours — and all made in its own factory.
Walker's role at Hope is as brand manager, but her role covers much more than the title suggests. Responsible for marketing, connecting with media outlets and more, Walker is often found representing the brand at events.
"A great part of my job is showing off and marketing this in-house process and being proud of the attention to detail from the employees at every stage of the manufacturing, assembling, sales and marketing process," she tells BikeRadar.
Riding and racing
Talk to anyone in the bike biz and you'll find someone who has a passion for riding. Walker is no different, but her riding is on another level and takes her to some amazing places.
As part of the Hope enduro team, Walker races at elite level in the UK and Scottish series, and took part in a number of events in the Enduro World Series in 2015, too.
She's also an avid adventurer. Her dawn ride with friend and mountain bike guide Julia Hobson resulted in an inspirational film and graced the cover of MBR magazine. She recently took on the Yak Attack too, which describes itself as "the highest mountain bike race on Earth."
Walker is also the driving force behind Hopetech Women, which combines online how tos and inspirational stories with regular rides and events for women across the UK.
The rides take place every month and are designed to be social, relaxed and aimed at both getting more women out riding and building local communities around mountain biking in these locations.
Numbers are growing steadily and the events are proving popular, with the Christmas 2016 Hopetech Women ride at the Forest of Dean attracting over 60 women despite soggy conditions. The tea and cake on offer post-ride certainly helps encourage conversation and chat as well!
In addition to rides, Walker has recently introduced maintenance and technical workshop sessions to the list of events that Hopetech Women runs, and for 2017 is running a series of rides alongside a number of mountain bike events in the UK — such as the Scott MTB Marathon event in Builth Wells and the Peak District Pioneer adventure 'cross race in Derby.