The Swiss rider who, thanks to his Track Bike, combines peaks and minimalism, introspection and architecture

“I look for remote areas of the world: places where I can feel alone, where distractions or restrictions cancel out, where nature supports me. In these scenarios I am inundated with sensations, everything is much more saturated. Conquering a mountain is extremely powerful, getting to the top thanks to your body and the help of your bike is pure euphoria”. Patrick Seabase’s voice pedals between metaphorical strength and ability to suggest, it pushes us into hidden places, it allows us to explore hybrid universes: outer and inner, tangible and intangible dimensions.

“The more you ride a bike, the more intense the relationship with this element becomes. I think it’s a valid paradigm for any passion, like painting or playing an instrument. It’s a gradual process that evolves in your subconscious.” For this Swiss ultra-athlete, the relationship with the bike represents much more than the modern chanson de geste that he has managed to create and complete in recent years: epic challenges that have led his legs to dominate sublime climbs and endless ultramarathons on two wheels.

His connection with the Track Bike seems to be a private, personal philosophical current, an introspective study of the athletic challenge, of the exceptional exploit that results in passionate historical evocation, in erudite anthropological examination. “The replica of a 1910 Tour de France stage is the long ride I am most fond of. I love the pioneers, I love their ability to achieve the unthinkable, their pragmatism, their way of appearing. Modern cyclists don’t inspire me like these legendary figures. The bike allows me to feed my cultural sphere. I am particularly fascinated by architecture, civil engineering, bridges and roads. Just think about the transition of an ancient road to asphalt…. That element becomes a symbol of an enormous process called civilization”

Sociology and minimalism, knowledge and effort. In front of Patrick’s words, cycling turns into a magnet of the most disparate themes: components that form consciousness and intellect, that force him to reflect on his human and professional condition. “I don’t see myself as a cyclist. I’m not part of any scene, I feel by myself, I go my own way without judging anyone. Many of the things I do are not commercial, but underground: it’s difficult to maintain a balance between these two poles, because the more commercial something is, the more you lose creative control over it. And I struggle to live with that compromise. After years on the bike, I realized that my passion was turning solely into work, and in recent months I’ve decided to distance myself from it. Sometimes you have to get away from the thing you love to find the old flame again”.

And walking away from one thing also means being able to get closer to another. Photography, for example: a pivotal tool for a necessary personal evolution and for a new project, far from pedals and handlebars. “During the pandemic I was stuck in America with a broken frame. So I started doing long hikes and photography. I have been photographing for over twenty years and this last period has allowed me to mature a new perspective on my surroundings, on myself. I realized that other things, besides cycling, can make me happy. For this reason I decided to create a new outlet: a platform allowing me to express my vision and the things that inspire me. More on this soon”.

Photo by Phil Gale
IG 1_in_the_gutter
Athlete Patrick Seabase
IG @patrickseabase
Text by Gianmarco Pacione