The fact he insists a top-five finish is a realistic aim for the event indicates the level of standing Jason Auld holds in the extreme sport.
The event is the biggest unicycling competition the sport has to offer and takes place every two years. It attracts competitors from 35 countries to its Unicon series, which consists of six categories: long distance, freestyle, jumps, track, offroad and team sports.
Auld, 23, feels that while he can’t be considered a favourite for the championship, he is confident that he can improve on his previous outing in the competition. “I’m aiming for a top five finish,” he said. “That would be higher than my previous attempt in 2006 in Switzerland, where I came in 13th place.
“Certainly a lot has changed since then. I was only seventeen at the time and I’m definitely taking things a lot more seriously. Now I’m a professional and train full time so my expectations are a lot higher.”
Auld turned professional in 2008 when he joined Voodoo Unicycles – a team of six top professional unicyclists which each bring their own expertise to the group to form an extreme unicycling outfit.
Since then, the team has gained the attention of the media on several occasions, having made appearances on CBBC, BBC ALBA, Live from Studio 5 and ITV’s The Hour show.
“We’re the UK’s only extreme unicycling display team,” explains Auld. “We’ve got the top riders in each discipline as part of the team and we’ve gone from strength to strength really.
“We started off just riding together and doing little demonstrations in public, and now we are a professional team who perform at events across the world.”
The Unicycling World Championship takes place in Brixen, Italy from July 20-31.
• REPORT BY MATTHEW ROBERTSON