My name is Hasanali Kambe (Ali), I am a 26-year-old rider from the Ottawa region. I immigrated to Canada when I was 12 and come from a mixed background (Turkish, Japanese, Bangladeshi, and Thai).
Growing up I competed in many sports, namely soccer, rowing and track-and-field. During this time I would often use my bike to get to and from practice. After spending some time away to finish high school and University in Halifax, Nova Scotia I moved back to Ottawa. Moving back to the capital region I found that many of my friends had picked up cycling as a hobby and for sport, I quickly started riding a lot as well. My bicycle of choice was a fixed-gear track bike as this was what I had grown accustomed to riding in university.
After a year or so, I decided to try my hand at racing. This coincided with the start of the COVID pandemic, which meant that for a while there were very few, if any at all, racing events to participate in. I decided to start focusing on training. By this point I had connected with the broader cycling community in Ottawa and found like-minded people who were into racing track bikes as well as road and gravel. In 2022, our local group had established an unsanctioned fixed gear criterium series in Ottawa.
Outside of fixed-gear riding, I also ride gravel. My first exposure to gravel biking was an old CX frame. Exploring the Ottawa region off-pavement opened up a world of cycling that made me appreciate bicycles even more. The gravel scene is still new and fresh, but the atmosphere of gravel racing is amazing! Through gravel, I also got introduced to cyclocross and recently competed in my first CX race. I thoroughly look forward to competing next season as well.
When I’m not on my bike, I am usually busy wrenching at my job as a professional bike mechanic, which I have been doing professionally for three years, and volunteered at bike co-ops since university. I love being able to help other people enjoy their bikes and encourage more people in Canada to become cyclists. I love promoting cycling as a way for newcomers to Canada, like myself, to integrate and connect with their new home.
I am looking forward to representing Montu in the 2023 season. I have plans to compete in many gravel events around the Ottawa region as well as in other parts of Ontario and fixed gear crits in Quebec. The events I am most looking forward to are the Almonte-Paris Roubaix, Hurting in Halliburton, the Laval Fixed Gear criterium series, and BRGR.