Interbike Day Two

We have another new Gallery up with captioned photos of the highlights of the day. Go check it out!

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In the course of snapping photos and gathering details, it’s inevitable that we’d also have some interesting conversations with the people behind the products. It’s sometimes tough to capture such talk, but really, that’s a big reason we come to Interbike – to exchange ideas and get fired up all over again about bike riding.

Some highlights:
– It’s a small world… Jackie of WTB was one of the experts showing us how it’s done at the Dirt Rag Women’s Weekend at Ray’s MTB back in February. She can sling some facts as well as huck a bike. We also saw Ray himself walking around, testing bikes and working on sponsorships, taking a break from building more stunts at his place.

– Craig at Jamis and I talked about the role of 650B wheel size, after he showed us their new B2 full-suspension bike that uses the ‘tweener wheels. I’m currently testing a Carver KillerB that also has 650B’s. Two different styles of bike, but we agreed that 650B’s are a nice middle option that allows you to sling the bike around more than with 29” wheels, but that still has more rolling-over capability and grip than 26”. It will be interesting to see who else makes use of this size, and for what. Craig said it best: “It’s not a new standard, it’s an option.”

Sanyo, the electronics company, is debuting a new electric-assist bike on Wednesday at the indoor show. But what’s really cool is that they are working on a solar recharging station for electric bikes.

– We tried several electric-assist bikes today, doing research for future Bicycle Times coverage. It seems that their batteries and motors are getting smaller and more powerful – these bikes aren’t the hulking beasts of ten years ago. They definitely have a place in getting people to try riding who aren’t as fit as us mountain bikers.

Hans Rey was hanging out at the GT booth, passing out flyers for his Wheels 4 Life charity program, which is one of several groups working to get bicycles in the hands of people who really need them. He also told us about a new concept he’s working on he calls “Flow Country”: it’s a designation, in a similar fashion to IMBA’s Epics, that would mean those sweet trails that are a mix freeriding and cross country – flowy, fast, with berms and jumps that could be hit with a big travel bike or rolled with a hardtail for equal fun. He’s first trying out the concept in Livigno, Italy.

– Celebrity sightings (besides No Way Rey) included Cristina Begy (from that famous cover of issue #105), Chris Currie from Speedgoat in the same Dirt Rag jersey he always wears, Joe Breeze helping prep demo bikes, and Jay Petervary – who described his recent tandem running of the grueling Tour Divide with his wife Tracy as “a lot of fun.” There are only a very few people who would call it that.