It was in Harrogate, just up the road. Bike shows are one of my favourite things (like flying on an airliner, no matter how many times I do it the wonder never leaves me) and so I couldn’t very well pass it up. It’s a small show and trade only. The UK cycle trade show scene is in a constant state of flux. There used to be just one or two giant shows every year, London and perhaps one ‘oop North’. But over the years many of the major brands left the circuit to start their own. It made sense for them, if a trade show is for generating trade there are a number of advantages to having your own dedicated show. Although this strategy wasn’t very popular with dealers – as a retailer the more brands you carry the more individual dealer days you have to attend. Companies like Marin and Raleigh were amongst the first to defect, and it worked very well for them, but for smaller companies who sell fewer bikes such an event just isn’t cost effective. The big shows still exist – doing very well in spite of the absence of Marin, Raleigh and the rest – but they are expensive. Too expensive for many of the micro companies. And with the public demand for more ‘public days’ adding costs – even more so.
Which is where The Bike Place comes in. They’ve spotted a gap in the Bicycle Trade Show market and rushed in to fill it. What they’ve done is create an inexpensive trade-only show, bringing together a group of smaller, often niche suppliers to create a classy event without the crowds and freneticism. If that’s even a word.
Not expecting to find anything particularly new I went to meet up with one or two people who represent companies who are presenting their bikes in the Cyclorama book. But I did find one or two interesting bikes and other doodads which I hadn’t seen before.
This morning, in addition to the joy of waking up to discover that the car had been hit by a bus in the street, I discovered that my big camera is toast. Time for a new one, but in the meantime I had to resort to the happy snapper so aologies for the quality. And apologies also for the horrid carpet which appears in some of the images. As ever, right click and ‘view image’ to see it biggered up.
Sanderson bikes, steel, UK centric hartails. Very nice and earning a cult following.
When I started in the industry this kind of bike was out-moded and behind the times. My how things have changed. I certainly like it, and there are several companies doing similar things, Nirve and Trek included. But will people buy it/them? I certainly hope so. We shall see.
How can something so hardcore look so lithe?
There are only one or two places in the UK where a full-blown DH bike makes any sense. Our mountains just aren’t mountaneous enough. So say hello to a much more sensible weekend weapon, the Kona Entourage, a full blown DH bike in all but travel -170mm is all this needs to do its thing. Proving that it’s not about how much you’ve got, it’s the way that you use it..
Danny’s own trials brand. Note thru-axle front hub. Nice.
This thing has so much work in it. Very impressive indeed, and though it looks very nice this isn’t a stylig excercise, each and every tube junction is the way it is for a reason. More on this later – fingers crossed…
Purple anodising never left my heart.
Sorry I didn’t get pics of any Kogas which were there in force, and KCNC’s UK importer appear to be stocking the full range now – incredible stuff. But you’ll just have to take my word for it…
Anyway. Product of the show was the nifty Colony adjustable threadless headset spacer. More of which in a future post. Thought of the show? People are still spending big money buying high end bikes.