Read Part One
Man, there is a lot to cover - did we do all this in three days?
In truth, though, this hardly scratches the surface of Interbike. Luckily we
will have some other contributions from different perspectives over the next
several days, including a technical piece from Kraig Willett, interviews by
Casper Casparian and if I'm not mistaken, something from Crazy Jane.
More Pacing the Floor
Jamie Paolinetti screened his documentary The Hard Road
on Monday afternoon to a packed house - literally, people were still streaming
in, to stand in the back and along the walls, after the movie had started. This
was great to see, and I hope that between the Interbike and Worlds screenings
more people in Europe will start to hear about the film. If you want more info
on The Hard Road, click
Monday evening was the 2nd Yoplait Women's Cycling Summit.
The first summit was held earlier this year in Minnesota during the Nature
Valley Grand Prix. In attendance at this second summit were
AdventureSports Radio as well
as race organizers and many others (sorry to those not named; I lost my
With Michael Aisner, David LaPorte and Giana Roberge at the
helm, a preliminary mission statement had been drafted and the attendees
discussed hurdles women face getting into cycling and graduating into racing.
Some of these include not being comfortable with their local bike shops, being
intimidated at their first race, lack of cornering skills (which are essential
at almost any local US race) and safety issues (i.e., women riding long
distances in training). These topics were discussed within the larger framework
of what has been successful, and what could be done to remove barriers, to
interest women in cycling or reinforce that interest.
As was explained at the beginning of the summit, one summit
would not suffice to achieve the goals. So this will be a continuing process,
but it was very favorable that so many industry representatives attended. All
the attendees were invited to actively participate. If you would be interested
in getting involved, send me an email and I will hook you up. We have some ideas
that we intend to forward and we will keep you informed. The agenda for this
second summit is
(requires Adobe Acrobat Reader).
While I was at the Postal booth I chatted with some of the
extremely helpful personnel, and one of the ladies joked (speaking of the Postal
riders who are continuously mobbed), "No one ever wants to take our
picture!" Well, I did - Debra, it was a pleasure to meet you! Click for larger
James Kunstek and Debra Terry of the US Postal Service
Richard Byrne of Speedplay
Check out Speedplay's history of the pedal
The Speedplay Pedal
ONCE's black gold at
Giant Limited Edition #39 of 100
Another shot of the limited edition
Zoom - nice
The Azonic Saber
Eric Matlock of
Side Effects TV
Owner Ron Blocher appeared on Interbike Interactive
The Rockshox booth
A "road scholar" at
Hincapie and Armstrong
It was pretty certain that a host of pro riders were in store at
this edition of Interbike, since the Worlds were just concluding in Hamilton,
Canada, a mere 3000 km from the City of Lights and Showgirls, and there had been
plenty of the bright lights of cycling at last year's show too. So the team
sponsors' booths were a must-see, and there were many riders scheduled to sign
autographs during the show, including Alessandro Petacchi at the Pinarello area,
plenty of Posties, Tyler Hamilton at Speedplay, Gilberto Simoni at Cannondale,
David Millar at CycleSport, et cetera.
Sunday afternoon at 5,
Cannondale had beer and Simoni on offer. There was an enormous line of
people waiting to get Simoni's autograph, and there he was, sitting at a table
drinking a beer and eating pretzels, signing and posing for pictures. It had to
be an especially good day for Cannondale, as Astarloa had won the Elite Mens
Road Race in Hamilton a few hours earlier.
Cannondale was also playing the trailer for the Giro
documentary, The Quest, that will be available in December. The
documentary follows the Saeco team in this year's Giro d'Italia and is narrated
by Phil Liggett. The film is by Greg St. Johns, Russ Elder and Jonathan West. I
had the pleasure of meeting all three of these gentlemen and it was a highlight
of my day - that and standing two feet away from Gilberto Simoni...
Russ, who said he is die-hard Daily Peloton reader, gave me a
copy of the documentary trailer (thank you, Russ!) and we hope to be able to
make the trailer available here on the DP so you can watch it. Jonathan is a
cinematographer and director who has worked on Star Trek, CSI and is currently
working on the television series Charmed. He said that he loved doing The
Quest, and though it might seem unusual, after a long day of work on the tv
show, he would spend the rest of the night editing The Quest for
enjoyment. Greg might be familiar to you from his work with Jamie Paolinetti on
The Hard Road. The DP will be publishing an interview with these three
about their experiences following the Giro and making The Quest, so keep
an eye out for it.
Cannondale also had Gibo's bikes on display - his famous pink TT
bike, and the special bike that was so light that weight had to be added to make
it "legal" for the race. Click for larger images.
Gibo's Giro bike
Gibo's "lighter than air" model
Gilberto Simoni - 2003 Giro d'Italia winner
The next day I returned to Cannondale to see Simoni, having
dawned on me how perfect it would be to have him sign my The Quest DVD. I
ran into John Wordin there and I was acting all stupid about the autograph I'd
just gotten. John said, "Hey, you ought to get Moser to sign it, too - he's
right over there." I quailed, but John said, "You got a pen? Come with me." He
introduced me to Francesco Moser and Marco Dallapiccolla of Red Rose Imports,
who was with him. Mr. Moser signed my DVD, just below Simoni's autograph. How
could one be more thrilled? Thanks, John!!!
After that we camped out in some nearby chairs (chairs are
premium space at Interbike) with Ken Toman, Thurlow Rogers and Greg St. Johns,
watching the action. Click for larger images.
Francesco Moser watching The Quest trailer
Moser and Dallapiccolla watching the trailer
John Wordin, Jaime Nichols, Ken Toman and Greg St. Johns
In my further wanderings, I found Fred Rodriguez at
First Endurance - I thanked him for
all the support he has given the DP, and with a smile he said simply, "No
At the Postal pavilion, there were Robbie Ventura and Floyd
Landis. I told Robbie that we have contests from time to time on the DP and we
like to be able to give something to the winner - and would he sign a photo for
us. He said, "Well, we'll do a few of them then - c'mon Floyd, lets's sign some
of these." I know this is properly Crazy Jane's province, but what a great bunch
The line for Tyler's autograph was long, and it was the same for
Hincapie. When I was taking pictures over at Pinarello, the time came for
Petacchi to do his autograph signing, and before he had even arrived, the line
was growing by leaps and bounds - I had been there the day before and it was
quiet, so I must have come along at the tail end. More than once I was told at
this show that European teams and/or riders were surprised that there was such
interest in them in the US (little do they know). I guess it makes sense if a
team never ventures to the States to find out. Click for larger images.
Robbie Ventura, US Postal
Robbie Ventura and Floyd Landis at US Postal
Tyler Hamilton, CSC, at the Speedplay booth
Alessandro Petacchi at Pinarello
Fred Rodriguez at
George Hincapie at
Monday night was the party held by
Sinclair Imports for its customers,
and we had been invited. Sinclair customers and suppliers, and other interested
organizations (mainly internet cycling media), had lent their support to
Sinclair and in exchange Sinclair had ice sculptures done with the
organizations' logos. So this was a must see (er, not our name in lights, but
our name in ice...). It was in the upstairs section of the
Carlo Pub and Brewery, and there was a second room to accomodate the guests,
which numbered in the many hundreds. A half a dozen kinds of the pub's own beer
were served, along with some great food. There were almost a dozen tv monitors
playing 2003 Tour de France highlights which provided a nice diversion for the
shy and the weary...
It was amazing to be around many of the bright lights of the
cycling world in such a different environment. I got to chat with the
irrepressible Wes Zeigler and his teammate Jacob Fetty (Team West Virginia), with Richard Byrne of Speedplay,
with Rich Hincapie and Steve Baker from Hincapie Sports, with Scott Montogomery,
late of Cannondale (more from my "to-do" list), and the legendary Beppo Hilfiker.
Although we took very few photos at the party, some of the other attendees whose
names you might know were Gilberto Simoni, Fred Rodriguez, George Hincapie,
Tyler Hamilton, Roberto Gaggioli, Chechu Rubiera, Robbie Ventura, Victor Hugo
Pena, Floyd Landis, Phil Liggett and Francesco Moser. Having an early meeting
the next morning we did not stay too late... Click for larger images.
The first two days of Interbike were energetic - the main hall was on the
second floor, and we had our choice of several tall staircases or an escalator.
Sunday and Monday stairs were the vehicle of choice, but on the final day,
Tuesday, I got to be pretty good friends with the escalator attendant - she was
one of many convention hall personnel to whom you showed your pass to gain entry
to the hall.
The majority of people entered the convention from the Venetian hotel, which
was connected by very long hallways carpeted in gold. The walk just to get
through the hotel to the convention hall must have been a quarter mile - each
evening the walk seemed longer than that morning's, and the following morning
longer than the evening before. By Monday night I thought the phrase "dead feet
walking" seemed appropriate.
To be honest, several in our party were in big bipedal trouble by Monday
evening - at one point I thought I would even miss the ice sculpture. For sure I
figured I would have to spend all of Tuesday sitting at our booth rather than
walking around. (I didn't.) Late Tuesday afternoon as I was walking around, very
gingerly, I wondered if anyone else might be in the same boat. So as I walked, I
watched others around me to see how they were walking. Almost one for one, they
all seemed to be trying to somehow walk without having to put full weight on
That's about it, but I would like to say thanks to the convention and
Interbike staff. The convention personnel I dealt with were all very helpful -
from the Interbike Daily writing staff to the press officials. One kitchen
worker was trying to follow the Cubs game on Sunday and I checked scores for him
on the net. The next day he brought me a water. Tuesday afternoon when I was
shooting the Interbike "floor" photo seen in Part One, one of the hall
attendants apologized when she asked to see my photo pass - she told me that she
had had a lot of people, mostly men, argue with her when she asked to see their
photography stamp (required to take photographs inside the main hall and which
apparently said individuals did not possess). My last time exiting the hall, she
shook my hand and said she hoped to see us next year.
I leave you with some of my "souvenirs" of Interbike and, now that my feet
have recovered, I'm looking forward to next year!
Click for larger image