Having a bicycle stolen is never a nice feeling. Still, when Ruan Deyzel's much loved carbon-fibre Yeti and Titanium Lynskey were both stolen, he used the replacement opportunity to build the bike of his dreams.
Deyzel started riding mountain bikes in the early 1990s and used to bought old copies of Mountain Bike Action according to weight at one of those second-hand bookstores.
"I devoured these magazines, and the North American mountain biking scene really made an impression on me. It was a time when brands like Yeti, Klein, Intense and Ibis were blossoming."
"As a kid I used to modify and build stuff. I dreamt of being a frame builder. The mechanical side of the industry has always been my thing. I have also aimed to have bikes and equipment that nobody else has throughout my cycling career. I am not interested in the mainstream stuff."
When faced with a problem, Deyzel is the kind of person who relentlessly seeks solutions. When he couldn't find a chain lube that suited his particular needs, he created his own. Today Deyzel's Smoove lube can be found on chains worldwide.
"When I found myself without bikes, I really took my time and searched for the right frame and brand that appeals to me and the type of riding that I love to do," says Deyzel.
The riding that Deyzel likes doing is the extreme enduro type. A career on sketchy 1990s downhill bikes and off-road motorcycles allowed Deyzel to develop an advanced descending skillset.
As we cruised the backroads of Pretoria to a private trail network, Deyzel was on his back wheel most of the time, or whipping over every speed hump in the road. Once we arrive at the trails, Deyzel is in his element on the steep, gnarly, rocky trails that have been carved into the landscape.