Welcome Village Bikes

If you’re riding through Lakewood or Sarasota, FL this spring and you need a new pair of shorts or a sleeveless jersey to beat the FL heat, stop by Village Bikes for a visit.  They just recently signed on as a Hincapie Dealer and we’re glad to have them as part of our team.  We've hosted a few of them in Greenville in the past and they are good people.

Because it's not all about the bike...

Village Bikes is a full service family bike shop, run by active cyclists and triathletes. They cater to the needs of all skill levels, from casual cyclist to trail riders.  If you stop by, you might run into one of the many die-hard racers that frequent their business.  Ask for a few training tips or browse the new Hincapie Spring Collection.  You can find them at:

8111 Lakewood Main Street
Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202
941.388.0550

3898 South Osprey Avenue
Sarasota, FL 34239
941.366.7702

George Hincapie Video

George Hincapie is the newest brand ambassador for Road ID. You’ve probably seen George riding this year in his Wrist ID Elite.  Versus did a Road ID Athlete Profile during the coverage of Paris Roubaix.  Check it out in case you missed it:

Road ID is also a sponsor of the Hincapie Development Team and we’re glad to have them on board with our program.  They have provided all of our athletes with ID’s to help keep them safer out on the road.  Many of us love the comfort and style of the new Wrist ID Elite, but there are some that still choose the original Wrist ID Sport with a Velcro closure.  If you haven’t seen all the great products these guys make, visit their website.  Thanks to them for their awesome support of our Hincapie Development Team Program.


Welcome Pro Bikes in Pittsburgh

We’d like to welcome Pro Bikes in Pittsburgh, PA to the Hincapie Dealer Family. Pro Bikes has 3 locations in the Western PA (Monroeville, South Hills and Squirrel Hill.  They carry a huge selection of bikes and accessories, and now you can find the new Hincapie Spring Collection in their showroom.

The new Monroeville store looks cool to us.

Pro Bikes sponsors several top level racing teams, bike rides and races, so they are very active in their community.  Stop by and see them if you’re in the area.  Tell them Hincapie HQ says hello.

Three Locations:

5876 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15217
Phone: 412-586-5497

4030 William Penn Highway
Monroeville, PA 15146
Phone: 412-229-8473

102 Fort Couch Road
Bethel Park, PA 15241
Phone: 412-851-1109

Little 500 Fun

This weekend is the Little 500 at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN. The “Little Five” as it’s commonly called is a very unique bicycle race that pits student against each other on identical, single speed, coaster brake bikes.  It was started in 1951 and follows the tradition of the Indianapolis 500 car race, so the students do 200 laps of the quarter mile cinder track at Bill Armstrong Stadium. I can say that this is truly a one-of-a-kind event, because I was in the stands in 1987.

My sister, Kelly was attending IU and she invited me to come for the weekend.  She wasn’t really inviting me to the bike race, but rather the incredible list of social activities and parties that surround the actual event.  I wasn’t riding competitively yet, but I had watched the movie “Breaking Away” and knew a little about the famous race.  I jumped at the chance to witness it firsthand.  I was thoroughly impressed.

The Little 500 is one of the biggest events of the spring semester at Indiana University.

After the usual college “social” functions and charity events (I do love how the Greek community 'PC' packages all that crazy partying), we packed into the stadium to watch the main event. There are actually rules for the participants in the race that make riding in the race fairly selective.  You have to be a full time student, an amateur cyclist, keep at least a 2.0 GPA and no substance abuse. In contrast, those rules do not apply if you want to enjoy the action from the bleachers!  It was one, huge, loud, enthusiastic pit of people surrounding that track as they shot the gun off for the traditional Indy start.

Everyone rides identical Schwinn bicycles.

I’ll spare you the details of the race, as you just need to watch “Breaking Away” to see how the whole thing works. Teams use the same bike and actually do bike exchanges where one rider will stand on the coaster break as he comes skidding into the exchange box while the new rider does his best cyclocross mount to rejoin the action.  It really is an amazing experience to watch the whole thing. These guys are real cyclists. They pedal those 46x18 gears like true track stars.  In the late 80’s the bikes were big heavy steel beasts, but they are now more sophisticated Schwinn machines (still flat-pedal, single-speed bikes with 36 hole 700c wheels rolling on 28-32mm tires).  If you get a chance to see this unique competition, send us some pictures. It might not be as well-known as a Paris-Roubaix or a Tour of CA, but it’s got its own history and traditions just like those famous races.  Like other great sporting events, you don’t have to actually participate to appreciate the achievements being accomplished in front of you.

What Jersey Hangs on Your Wall

The bike industry is a fairly small industry.  I am constantly amazed at the number of people I run into at bicycle business and events around the country that I have met or ridden with at one time or another.  It’s not uncommon to talk to a rider at a dealer in CA that has climbed to the top of Caesar’s Head in SC, or talk to a customer service rep in Chicago that has watched George win a stage of the Tour of CA.  Our industry is like a family with relatives living in different states.  You don’t always know the other person, but you always have some cycling in common. Hincapie Sales Manager, Lynn Joslin experienced this on a recent visit to Competitive Cyclist in Arkansas.

Competitive Cyclists' Wade Wolfenbarger took the 2010 Six Gap KOM Jersey in the 34 & under category.

While getting the tour of the facility with Hincapie Sales Rep, Robert Snedden she noticed a very familiar jersey handing on the wall.  She is well acquainted with the GA 6 Gap event jerseys and this one was a rather rare 6 Gap KOM jersey from 2010.  The 6 Gap Century is one of the most challenging rides in the southeast, regularly attracts over 3000 riders to the 100 mile event.  Turns out, Wade Wolfenbarger won the 6 Gap KOM competition at the challenging GA century ride last year and was proudly displaying his prize for all his colleagues to see.  (No, he wasn’t actually wearing it at his desk, but I am sure that it is an effective reminder to his coworkers of his climbing prowess.)  We make all the jerseys for the 6 Gap events, and it was a real treat for Lynn to see one so far west.  That’s just proof of the attraction that 11,200 feet of climbing in 100 miles can have on our cycling brethren.

If you’re a climbing fan, or just looking for a first-class century ride to challenge you and your friends, check out the 6 Gap Century. There is a shorter 3 Gap Fifty if you want to finish up earlier to take Wade’s picture at the finish line.  If you do the ride, make sure you get the event jersey to commemorate your accomplishment. You might even want to hang it on your wall.

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