Our site works best with JavaScript enabled.

News - update on all things Alpkit

Focus with Steve Bate now available to rent

By Alpkit
03, Dec, 2018

After premiering at Banff Mountain Film Festival and a great reception at Kendal you can now rent or buy the full film to watch at home.

Steve Bate is a Paralympic cyclist and a member of our Alpkiteer team. Last year Chris Prescott of Dark Sky Media decided to tell his story.

The film, FOCUS, premiered at Banff Mountain Film Festival earlier this year and had a UK premier at Kendal Mountain Festival last month. 

Focus is Steve's story, from his diagnosis in 2011, with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), a severe form of tunnel vision that caused a 95% loss of his vision and will eventually lead to him going blind. Having always led an active lifestyle and with a deep rooted love of the outdoors the diagnosis was a crushing blow; at the age of 34 he lost his driving licence and was registered visually impaired.

Determined not to let the diagnosis bring an end to his former lifestyle Steve began a journey of challenge and discovery, getting off the sofa and pursuing his dreams. Two years after his diagnosis Steve travelled to the USA and the Yosemite valley with the goal of climbing the 3000ft wall of El Capitan. After two ascents of El Cap with aid climbing guru Andy Kirkpatrick, Steve spent 6 days on the wall and became the first visually impaired person to aid solo 'Zodiac', a 16 pitch route on El Cap's South-East face.

Returning from Yosemite Steve felt a new goal was needed and decided to change his focus to track cycling with the aim of being selected for the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. Having never raced on a road bike or ridden on a velodrome this was an ambitious goal but within 6 months Steve made selection for British Cycling and Rio. Surpassing all expectations Steve went on to win two gold medals, a bronze and broke a world record.

Aside from Steve's continuing involvement with track racing he has combined his love of cycling and the outdoors to go on ambitious bike packing adventures all over the world. Having already made a month long trip to Patagonia Steve participated in the Rovaniemi 150, a fat bike race that takes place in Finnish Lapland every February. Located inside the Arctic Circle the 90 mile race is a continuous, self-supported event through the Arctic tundra where temperatures can drop below -35°C. One of the biggest challenges Steve faced with his condition is his night vision (or lack of it) and being so far North a large part of the race involved riding in the dark.

This extra element on top of the already punishing nature of the race gave Steve one of his greatest challenges to date.

You can watch the full film now at Reel House and get a 20% discount off rentals and purchases using the code ALPKIT20

Watch out for more from Steve and the Alpkiteer team coming soon.

  • Google+

No Comments

Share your thoughts about this article.

General News

Alpkit Adventure Weekender
Join us in store for an adventure filled weekend
Steve Bate wins the Rovaniemi 150
Winning the Rovaniemi 150 arctic ultra race

More from News

Elsewhere on Alpkit

Second City Divide Part 2
Did they make it to Glasgow?
Second City Divide Part 1
Alpkiteer Steve Bate takes on the Second City Divide
Lisbon to Malaga: A Bikepacking Adventure
Bikepacking from Lisbon to Malaga
The Beast
A custom Titanium Fat Bike care of Sonder Bikes
Wild About Argyll
Bikepacking the Wild About Argyll trail
Double vision
winning double gold in paralympics and worlds
A Calling to the Arctic, part 2
Part 2 of Steve Bate's first place bid at the Rovaniemi 150
A Calling to the Arctic, part 1
Steve Bate guns for first place at the Rovaniemi 150

More from Deeds

More from Develop

More from Spotlight

Be the first to hear about our newest products and promotions

Join AlpCol's Espresso newsletter for that hit of Go Nice Places, Do Good Things Greatness


By adding your email you consent to our terms and conditions