by Charlie Summers, PCI #512
Illinois State University Police Department
IPMBA Industry Liaison
The buzz at Interbike this year was that this was the last year Interbike would be in Las Vegas. The show’s promoters scheduled Interbike to premiere in Anaheim, California, for 2011. However, after the show, Interbike announced it would return to Vegas after all.
As the saying goes, “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas”, except Mitch kept me waiting at the airport for over an hour and a half after missing his flight due to questionable circumstances. I made the best use of my time at the airport preparing for the next few days.
The delay worked to our advantage. A message from Andy Paradowski of Hayes Bicycle Group told me to look him up when we arrived. After collecting Mitch’s bags, which did arrive on time, and then Mitch, we shuttled to the hotel, dropped off our stuff, and headed to the convention center to meet up with Andy.
We made our way to the Hayes booth, where Andy proceeded to give us a preview of the new items Hayes had to offer for 2011. The new Hayes Prime brakes are simply sweet. They feature an all new caliber with larger pistons; a new, stiffer two-piece rotor; a redesigned pad system; and a user-friendly adjustment system. They come in two different models: the Prime Pro and Prime Expert. Hayes claims this is their most powerful braking system to date. The Hayes Disc Brakes Tech Clinic at the IPMBA Conference will focus on how to maintain the Prime. Andy had to finish setting up and preparing for his seminars, so we looked up some of our other well-known vendors. We visited to the Marin booth first. Let me tell you – if you are a 29er fan, their new carbon 29er is super sweet. I’m not real big on 29ers, but this one really caught my eye. It is loaded with top-notch components and it won’t break your bank account like some high end bikes with comparable components. The rest of their line has also been upgraded for 2011, and I’m super stoked.
We moved on and located several of our loyal supporters, including Bike Medicine, Park Tool, Fox Racing Shox, Cycle Force Group, Ergon, Kenda, and Cygolite, so we could thank them in person for supporting our great organization. After spending almost two hours in the show before it even started, we had accomplished several things on our “to do” list. We decided to call it a day and go fuel our bodies in preparation for opening day.
On opening day, we got up early to make our way to the IMBA breakfast before they opened the doors. However, when we arrived we heard it was moved to day two. Everyone piled into the SRAM meeting room to scarf down some bagels and pastries (thanks, SRAM!) before heading up to the show. We didn’t get far before we ran into wall-to-wall people. This year’s attendance far surpassed that of last year. The place was simply crowded and enthusiastic. The atmosphere was even more electrified than in past years.
Mitch and I were in awe of some of the products out on the market for 2011. SRAM and Shimano introducing their new line of 2X10 products. These new lines are the wave of the future for mountain bikes. Almost all the new bikes had some sort of 2x10 products on them from one of these two big brands.
We were also excited with the new line of Osprey Hydration Packs. They are equipped with a built-in rain cover to keep your materials inside dry, which was a very nice feature. They also provide a variety of different models to fit everyone’s personal needs.
The Azonic team also ventured into new territory this year, with the debut of the XC line of helmets, which you will read about in a future review. This helmet is available in a matte black finish with 20 air vents to keep you cool during those long hot summer days of patrol.
Another product which Mitch thought was exceptionally nice was a portable air tank called the Prestaflator, from Prestacycle. It is a paintball-style tank which can be filled with nitrogen (N2) to air up your tires. You will be hearing more on this product later. They also carry a line of compact tools, which were super sweet as well. I look forward to working with them in the future.
These were just a few products from day one. The day just flew by. There were many more products we liked, but these really caught our eye.
On day two, we again awakened early to hit the IMBA-sponsored breakfast. We got there just in time to score a seat. The crowd filled the room, and after seeing the spread they put on, I understood why. They had a nice array of food and some great presentations from industry reps and supporters. It was well worth getting up for!
After that, day two was simply a blur. We hooked up with one of our newest instructors, Jeff Britton from Central Point, Oregon, who was also attending the show. Our mission was to talk with shoe manufacturers in hopes of discovering some viable new options for cycle patrol. We spoke with the Pearl Izumi reps, who offered several different shoes which I would consider for patrol use, including a nice urban design shoe.
The Five Ten group offered up some new editions to their line as well. Jeff advised he has worn Five Ten on patrol and absolutely loves them. He wears them off-duty as well. They were showing two new versions – the Cyclone and the new clipless Greg Minnaar shoe. Jeff and I were both impressed.
We visited with IPMBA Corporate Member Louis Garneau USA. I introduced Jeff to Heidi Myers, who is absolutely great to us. She hooked him up with their Lite Trainer to put to the test – his review appears elsewhere in this issue of IPMBA News. We also checked out some others brands which you’ll be hearing about in later editions.
We checked in with old friend Tim Schurr, lead instructor for the IPMBA Maintenance Officer Certification Course, who is always entertaining, to say the least. Long-time IPMBA supporter Mark Eumurian graciously showed us all the new Park Tools.
We stumbled upon the Tallac/TwoFish/King Cage display of accessories and on-bike storage solutions. We particularly liked a stealthy tool bag carrier, the “Behold”, which attaches to any standard bottle cage mounts. ZeroGoo’s Trent Ballentine demonstrated the Human Fuel gel/hydration pack delivery system, which might be useful on extended bike patrol, military, BRT applications, etc.
We ended day two with a stop at the Surly booth, where we examined one of their new super stout trailers. This thing will carry a load, just ask Mitch. They seemed very interested in coming up with a deal for LE and EMS.
The final day was spent going back and making sure we covered everything and everyone on our list. We secured some items for the silent auction for the annual conference, April 14-16, 2011, in Richmond, Virginia. We have some promising prospects to continue to follow up on. Finally, we were truly honored to meet a true legend in the world of mountain biking, Tinker Juarez. Mitch and I walked away from our conversation with Tinker with a memorable moment.
To sum up the show, the bikes and components continue to get better and better every year. Ladies and gentlemen, 29ers are here to stay. This year’s show proved that, with the many new designs and products for them. Two-by-ten gearing seems to be the up and coming trend, and Mitch’s beloved belt drive single speeds continue to expand. I hope you enjoyed the show!
Charlie serves as industry liaison on the IPMBA Board of Directors. He can be reached at email@example.com.
© 2011 IPMBA. This article appeared in the Winter 2011 issue of IPMBA News.