We have all heard of the hype that is Peter Hugh Davis—professional MMA fighter-slash-actor-slash-model. Cycling Malaysia sat down with the 34-year-old half-Malaysian, half-British fighter to find out more about his story in the cage, on two wheels, and as a kid growing up in London to becoming the Malaysian superstar he is today.
Born to be more than average, Peter’s life is anything but boring. As a young lad growing up in London, his interest in martial arts started when he was 16 years old. One day, he cycled with his mates to a local sports center that changed the way he looked at the sport.“I had a look through the doors and I didn’t really wanna go in as it looks a little bit dangerous. There were lots of people being thrown around, and people hitting pads. It just seemed interesting, so the next week I joined in.”
At 20, he began learning and training in one of the oldest martial arts there is—Wujiquan, the ‘ultimate void boxing’, from a fellow Malaysian in England. In 2004, his hard work had landed him victory in his 59-minute mixed martial arts debut against Masaya Doi by knockout at the UKMMAC.
Back then, when things turned sour for his career as a financial consultant at a subsidiary of Lehman Brothers’ banking empire and ultimately lost his job, he left London. After all, what better way to cope when you lose your job and left with only 800 pounds in cash than to take a holiday? That’s exactly what Peter Davis did; he packed his bags and flew to Malaysia.
OFF TO MALAYSIA
A Malaysian of mixed parentage, Peter was blessed with good looks. A fateful meet with an old friend who suggested that the half-native lad should try out modelling was a poke towards the right direction, which would soon become part of his career. Feeling that nothing better was falling in front of him, he took the first step by applying at a nearby Malaysian talent agency, and soon discovered that his heritage and lean, athletic body would take him places.
From a slow start of small-time photo-shoots and advertisements, his great potential eventually brought A-listers calling; he even landed roles on various TV commercials, obtained a role for a musical theatre piece, and became one of the most popular Malaysian male models out there.
Life seemed to be heading in the right path. One success opened the gate to another, and it kept coming for him. All this success, however, did not distract him from acknowledging his talent and interest in martial arts. Another door opened for the model-cum-actor when an opportunity to get back in the ring came knocking in 2012. ONE FC had offered the southpaw fighter an inaugural match set for October 3rd in Singapore, against Gregor Gracie—a member of the world famous fighting family, the Gracie.
To date, Peter has had 9 fights (as of October 9th) in the ONE FC, and is planning on fighting for a few more years.
What makes this man more than average is his still-growing portfolio. Proving to be as much of an athlete as he is “pretty”, the father of two is also representing KSH Bicycle. As a young chap, he started cycling at 10. He began with a cheap 90-pound bicycle as soon as he could cycle alone to school. Starting with a classic Apollo, to a Universal, and upgrading to a GT Timberline, he would never have expected to be sponsored with an all-mountain bicycle by KSH, the Commencal SX. He first encountered KSH as a customer, buying bits and pieces for his bicycles, and his involvement with KSH started when a friend of his, who also worked in KSH, suggested that he would be a good ambassador with his growing fanbase. Not only is he popular and athletic, but Peter also has a growing fondness of buying bicycle parts and building customized bicycles, which led him to building a hybrid bicycle for his girlfriend. He currently owns 4 bicycles at home.
How does cycling help him with training for upcoming fights? He explained that downhill mountain biking has given him boost in confidence and keeps him mentally ready when doing something dangerous. “When you gotta jump, you gotta commit. You have to commit, you have to think of nothing else.” He also shared that mountain biking has influenced his style of fighting: knowing when to be aggressive, so he doesn’t tire himself quickly. What is more, he also uses road cycling for training to assist in developing power, working on cardio, and building stamina.
“Cycling is actually fantastic. Doing off-road and downhill, the cardio and explosive power you get from that is phenomenal.” Peter expresses his love for riding by sharing that he takes time on the weekends usually to go riding and mostly once or twice a week.
– You don’t see Peter waiting for action. He goes looking for it. There’s so much more to Peter Davis than meets the eye. Fame has obviously not gotten in this guy’s head, as he still is as down-to-earth as that guy sitting next to you. He is happy with his life, and he is happy with being exactly who he is.