Morgane Charre. Pic: Sven Martin

60 seconds with… Morgane Charre

Get to know the former DH world champ with a penchant for flat pedals and smoothies

When unheard-of French downhiller Morgane Charre stormed to a World Championships gold medal win in Austria in 2012, it was a surprise. But with a talent born out of BMX and an upbringing on steep alpine tracks, perhaps it shouldn’t have been. Although undeniably skilful on the bike, Morgane has never quite managed a repeat of that first world-beating performance, but in recent times, since making the switch to enduro, her results are edging ever closer to the podium. Sam Hill’s already proven that it’s possible for a diehard flat-pedal rider to smoke the competition without clipping-in and, with a new team backing Morgane in 2020, we’ve got a sneaking suspicion that this might be her year!

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Main image: Sven Martin

Who is Morgane Charre?

A Frenchie who likes to play around on bikes or skis.

What do you do?

I’m an Enduro World Series racer for Pivot Factory Racing. I like to travel and discover new places, and I also work part time in a ski shop in the winter.

Where do you call home?

A tiny village next to La Clusaz in the French Alps. I love it. It’s close to Annecy and Morzine, and there are some amazing trails on my doorstep. It means I can ski in winter too.

What got you into mountain biking?

I always rode growing up, but it was more about touring with my family than competing. When I was 13, I started riding BMX and spent all my free time at the skate park, until someone lent me a DH bike. I was hooked, and raced my first World Cup in 2010.

What gets you excited to ride?

Fresh, loamy dirt and a good crew. The video from the Cannondale Waves crew in Portugal got me super-hyped too – I watched it three times in a row!

What’s your current go-to bike?

My Pivot Firebird 29. I’ve been riding it for two months now and I absolutely love it. It’s super-fun, but light enough for long rides.

Best trail you’ve ridden this year?

That’s a tough one, but I’d say some of the secret trails in Rotorua, New Zealand. The dirt there is unreal!

Biggest ride of your life?

In 2018 I went to Croatia with my boyfriend James McKnight, photographer Andy Lloyd and the guys from the TransDinarica guiding company. Over a week, we rode 50-90km a day. It was exhausting!

Worst crash?

Andorra in 2016. I cased a big double, had a massive OTB and broke my wrist.

Favourite rider to watch?

Sam Hill or Dakota Roche.

Favourite bike film?

It used to be The Uprising, but more recently I’ve been enjoying Motive.

(Watch the full movie for free on Red Bull

Clips or flats?

Flat pedals are my favourite. I think clips might help with racing though… we’ll see!

650b or 29in?

Both! I’d only ridden 650b wheels until this year, but I quickly got used to 29ers too.

Bike park flow or natural gnar?

Natural flow!

Dream non-bike sponsor?

A smoothie bar.

What would be your desert island luxury?

A surfboard.

What advice would you give your 13-year-old self?

Believe in your own abilities and dream big.

What would you be doing if you weren’t a pro rider?

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A job in the sports industry or environmental protection, but I’d still ride my bike for fun.