Category Archives: Gear

cody hero

Staff Infection: Cody Wignall, aka The Big Wigs (VIDEO)

FACT: Being a Contender all-star is probably one of the best things you can do with your life. And our very own Cody Wignall is a shining example of this. The young man started at Contender when he was a mere 16 years old. Now, seven years and seven bikes later, he’s become one helluva Contender employee. The kid knows everything!

Let’s get to know the guy behind the guy behind the guy.

How did you happen to start at Contender so young?

I started riding road bikes a little and knew Ryan from the shop rides. When I found out I had to do community service for my high school and that doing flat repairs and learning the ropes at Contender would actually qualify, I jumped on board. When I turned sixteen, they took me on full time and I’ve been here ever since.

Cody and one of his favorite TIME frames, the VRS Vibraser. Look how happy he is.

Cody and one of his favorite TIME frames, the VRS Vibraser. Look how happy he is.

So this is literally the first job you’ve ever had?

Job? You mean I’m not still doing this as community service?

You are. Don’t expect a paycheck. Forget what I said.

Gotcha.

Moving on….how long have you ridden? 

I started riding a road bike and showing up to the group rides in 2002. But I’ve been on a mountain bike forever. Everyday, after school, I’d try and do wheelies.

Do you ride road or mountain more? 

I prefer mountain. I hate cars and the bad drivers that drive them….badly.

How many bikes do you own? 

I have seven bikes, two classic Schwinns: a Stingray and a Collegiate, a cyclecross bike, a Pugsly snowbike, and then a couple mountain bikes and a road bike.

Do you have a favorite? 

The Pugsly -it turns heads.

Cody's favorite bike, his Pugsley. He calls it Pugs. we call that totes adorbs.

Cody’s favorite bike, his Pugsley. He calls it Pugs. We call that totes adorbs.

YOU turn heads, my friend. Where’s your favorite place to ride? 

I love riding Flying Dog in Park City. It gets you out of the way of everyone and there’s a beaver dam you ride past too. Pretty sweet stuff.

 

Cody showing off his Pugsley with Ryan and Alison.

Cody showing off his Pugsley with Ryan and Alison.

 

So what do you do when you’re not riding or [cough] volunteering at the shop? 

I do a little photography, I hike with the wonderful Emily [girlfriend], I’m taking business classes at SLCC and Blake is trying to teach me how to cook.

So what are some of your favorite things we carry? 

Anything TIME. I used to have two: a VRS Vibraser and a VXS. The new Skylon looks amazing.

I really Like Assos Clothing. I was lucky enough to visit their North American headquarters last month. I’ve always been a big fan but I think their stuff is pretty unique in the cycling world. They really innovate. I like their style too. You can tell a rider wearing Assos from a mile away. The T.equipe bib shorts are awesome. They’re the best bib short I’ve ever ridden in.

Cody refused to model these Assos T.equipe bibs.

Cody refused to model these Assos T.equipe bibs.

And I think Rolf Wheels are awesome too. They’re such a good value and it’s a great wheel. My favorite is the Vigor. For the money, it’s a good option because it works so well with the terrain we have here in SLC. It’s bullet proof and it gives you some aero ability too. Good wheel.

Cody does his best to dramatically present his favorite wheel: the  Rolf Vigor.

Cody does his best to dramatically present his favorite wheel: the Rolf Vigor.

But truly my favorite things at Contender are Ernie and Graham [Contender mechanic and proud new father -profile forthcoming]

To sum up, It’s just Graham. Zane’s a close second, though.

Anything else the people need to know? 

I’m part of a Schwinn gang. We like to cruise around downtown on the weekends.

Do you ever get into any gang fights or turf wars? 

No. We do bar spins though.

How close have any of you come to getting a tattoo of ‘Schwinn Gang 4 Life’ across your back? 

One of Cody's infamous Schwinns. If you see someone doing a wheelie on this bike, chances are it's the Big Wigs

One of Cody’s infamous Schwinns. If you see someone doing a wheelie on this bike, chances are it’s the Big Wigs

Not. Not close at all. That’s idiotic.

Ok, Wiggs, let’s cut the crap, time for some hard hitting questions: Rumor has it you’re really good at sax. 

Excuse me?

Sax: The saxophone. My sources tell me you can really blow. 

Yeah, well, I play sax on sax on sax on sax

Like Kanye? 

No, he makes stacks on stacks on stacks on stacks. Totally different.

So are you a sexy sax man?:

Yes. I’m the embodiment of everything sexy about the sax.

Any nicknames? 

My original nickname in the shop was Captain Wiggles. I think I’ve graduated to Big Wigs now.

Fitting for the man who is godfather to Ernie, Cyrus and Leo

I needed something commanding. The mutts respond to authoritative titles.

Cody showing off his wheelie skills. And our Contender kits.

Cody showing off his wheelie skills. And our Contender kits.

Have you ever considered staring in your own brand of motivational speaking videos?

No.

I have the perfect tag line.

Lay it on me.

Picture it. Lights are dimmed in a packed conference hall. Spot lights scan the stage.You jump out from behind a giant poster of your head, playing an especially sexy sax solo. As the music swells and the audience’s applause becomes a deafening roar, you turn to your audience and say, “Dig the Wigs”.

What ensues thereupon can only be described as pure pandemonium. The Wigs is big, the Wigs is very, very big. 

It’s perfect.

Print

Need a New Helmet? Have We Got A Deal For You!

Come in to Contender this Thursday, July 17th from 5pm until 7pm with your old, beat up (or beat down) helmet and get 25% off any Lazer helmet.

Look, we know a few of you have some nappy helmets. This is your chance to turn that embarrassment in to cash!

Our good friends at Lazer are going to be taking all the helmets traded in and completely recycling them.

That’s right! Any helmet that’s cracked, faded, or just ridiculously worn out can be traded in to be recycled and you get 25% off a gorgeously brand new Lazer Helmet.

We have old Lazer favorites like the Genesis and Helium as well as the brand new, super posh Z1

Even if you’re not in the market for a new lid, this is a great way to get rid of an old helmet and make sure it’s recycled.

So go grab your nasty old helmet and come see us this Thursday, from 5PM to 7PM!

Skylon_Red

First Pics of Brand New TIME SKYLON And All The Deets You Can Handle

Skylon_White

Whenever the French wizards over at TIME tell us that they have a new frame coming out, the reaction is not unlike that emitted from tween girls at a Beiber concert -usually a lot of screaming, fainting and crying with joy.

What can we say, we’re huge nerds fans when it comes to anything TIME.

Why? Because their frames are handmade works of art that also happen to sport some ridiculously impressive technology.

Named the Skylon, TIME’s new flagship is lighter, stiffer, more aero and sports a host of other truly remarkable features. Utilizing TIME’s strenuous RTM process (a manufacturing anomly in an industry obsessed with mass production and minimal labor investment), the new Skylon is built from a single piece -a change from previous TIME models that had the rear triangle butted into the main frame.

Speaking of the chainstays, the TIME Skylon is also sporting a new asymmetrical, monobloc chainstay constructed to increase rigidity and power transmission from hard working legs.

Infact, it seems like every trick TIME could use to stiffen the frame has been utilized. The larger tubing cross sections help quite a bit, not only by bettering strength and rigidity, but by allowing TIME to make the Skylon lighter as well.

TIME also lowered the Skylon’s headset bearing height by one-and-a-half inches, increasing stiffness and creating explicitly precise steering as well. For a brand that already handles like an F1 driver’s dream, that’s saying quite a bit.

And to that effect, TIME hasn’t forgotten their carte de visite; a ride that is stiff and responsive but still unbelievably smooth and refined. The Skylon utilizes Vectran fiber throughout the frame to keep things civilized when the road gets rough. Rest assured, however, that when an open road with a gorgeously winding decent presents itself, the Skylon will be begging to let it show you what it was built to do. If it were me, I’d listen.

TIME has also made the frame mechanical and electronic ready, with both options being routed internally.

Other notable features that round out the highlights are the Skylon’s carbon dropouts, a BB386 bottom bracket size and a zero offset aero seatpost.

Expect you’re favorite friendly neighborhood bike shop (aka: Contender) to have some frames available in the next couple of weeks in the matte white and gloss red color schemes pictured here.

As more frames and colors become available, we’ll definitely be the shop to call when that voice in you head starts to whisper ‘Skylon…’

Assos North America

Assos North America Headquarters

Assos North America Headquarters

Since I started working for Contender Bicycles nearly 6 years ago, I have always been impressed with the quality and following Assos has at the shop. Year to year there seems to be a new product in the line that impresses any level of cyclist. Upon first laying eyes on the display and feeling the fabric, craftsmanship and quality incorporated in their clothing, I have always know that it is nice clothing from feeling the fabric and admiring the craftsmanship. However, I had never worn the clothing, only seen others wearing it and speaking very highly of it. That changed a week ago today as I was riding mountain bikes in Bromont, Canada with the Assos crew. I gained a new understanding of what the company is all about.

Ryan and Alison gave me a great opportunity to travel to Montreal, Canada to visit Assos North America and learn more about their clothing and the company’s rich history. If you are after a product that has been tested and proven to amplify your cycling experience, Assos is a no-brainer. From the comfort of their chamois’ to the outstanding durability of the clothing, Assos has pioneered a new way of how clothing should feel while riding your bike.

Upon arriving in Montreal Sunday afternoon, I didn’t have much time to explore the town since we would be headed to the office the following morning and later Bromont to go mountain biking and learn more about the company. I headed downtown Sunday evening to attend an amazing dinner with the rest of the individuals on the trip and covered a lot of ground by foot to explore as much as we could. Montreal is simply great. The town had a very European feel and every building was lit up to show off the architecture. Little to my knowledge, the F1 Grand Prix was being held in Montreal the day before I landed which meant for a very busy setting downtown. The street were lined with super-cars I had never seen before, checkered flags decorated the buildings and the town was buzzing with excitement. Kids were running around wearing their favorite Ferrari memorabilia, race cars rallied up and down the roads, and all the while I just sat back and grinning ear-to-ear. Here I was in town for a couple days and I get to witness the aftermath of one of the biggest sporting events in Canada at the time.

Montreal post F1.

Montreal_Car

After walking inside the Assos North America Headquarters in Montreal, I knew I was in for a treat. The Assos office features a showroom displaying all the clothing Assos has to offer. Just like anything Assos, the showroom was stunning and made me want to own one of everything. Among all the clothing were also a few items such as an Assos road bike frame, vintage titanium pedals Assos created in 1986, and espresso. Lots and lots of espresso. After seeing the clothing and gaining more knowledge on how they design and execute a near flawless design, I quickly began to understand why Assos is leading the pack in the cycling clothing industry.

If a product is not going to benefit the cyclist in the aspect of comfort, fit, style or durability, Assos will go back to the drawing board rather than releasing a product that isn’t quite up to speed. The company has access to fabrics and materials that other manufactures simply don’t, and the time and testing that goes into creating these products goes above and beyond what I ever imagined. While Assos seems to be the pinnacle of what you would expect from a cycling clothing manufacture, just wait until you see what is in store for the upcoming 2015 season. Taking a great idea to the next level is what Assos is all about, and they are doing just that for the upcoming season.

Assos Showroom

Assos_Bike

AssosHQ_3

After touring the headquarters and processing everything I had learned about the clothing we shuttled off to Bromont, home of the Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup. I was lucky enough to ride a mountain bike through the twisty singletrack trails – the same trails the pro’s had conquered just a few years before. The riding was quite different than anything I was used to. The trails were technical with lots of roots and rocks to avoid which made it very fun to say the least. After returning back to the hotel, I enjoyed a very tasty Assos cookie that was made with perfection (just like the clothing) and attended dinner with everyone else who was on the trip. We spoke more about the company, our personal experiences with the company and the clothing and prepared for the ride in the morning. Unfortunately, the rain decided to damper our plans and I didn’t end up riding the second day, however that gave me time to try the local Poutine and get to the airport on time. Overall, the short trip felt a lot longer thanks to Assos! And like I mentioned before, stay tuned for 2015 Assos. You’re going to like the way you look.

Bromont_Deck2

Assos_Ride

Bromont_Ride3

Assos_Cookie

zane hero

Staff Infection: Zane Enders (video)

When Zane Enders came on to Contender’s staff earlier this Spring, who knew he had so many talents? Not only is the young man ridiculously enthusiastic about riding his bike, but it turns out he’s particularly fast and commonly airborne on the ski slopes too.

AND, judging by at least one of his nicknames, he get’s along pretty well with the ladies.

Let’s take a closer look at the enigma that is Zane Enders:

Zane! Are you from Utah orginally? 

Yessir. Born and bred in Ogden and Pleasant View. I came down to Salt Lake for school. I’m studing Computer Science at the U. I’m nerding out.

Is that Mark Whalberg pimpin' some Assos T.equipe bib shorts? Nope. It's our very own Zane. Don't worry, folks make that mistake all the time.

Is that Mark Whalberg? Nope. It’s our Zane showing off one of his favorite bib shorts: the Assos T.equipe. Don’t worry, folks think he’s Funky Bunch all the time.

You must really like computers. Have you ever wanted to be Matthew Broderick in War Games? 

I absolutely have. I also thought the kid from Live Free or Die Hard was pretty cool too. He could hack into anything.

Have you ever hacked into anything? 

I jail-broke my iPod Touch…but I don’t think that counts.

So how long have you been riding bikes? 

I’ve been mountain biking since I was 13. My cousin, Lea Davison gave me a bike. She now rides for Specialized’s pro team. But that was my start. From there I was talked into doing the 24 Hours of Moab race when I was 14. It was a lot of fun. After that I did it six years in a row.

Your cousin rides for Specialized?!?! Very nice! How does it feel to be that close to fame? 

Well, there’s actually a YouTube video of me doing a jump at Mammoth Mountain. It went viral for a month. So I’m fairly famous too:

So (ahem) it looks like you ski a little too. I love that you’re viral. 

Yeah. My friends thought I was going to break my knees on that jump. I was the only one who did it. They were too scared. I ski raced for 10 years until I graduated high school. I did the Junior Olympics when I was 15 and I placed 3rd in the Western Regions for G.S. My dad’s had me skiing since I was two years old.

No road biking? 

Not yet. Growing up, my dad always thought it was too dangerous.

I get that, totally. Why risk the harm of doing 20ish miles an hour on a paved road when you could really play it safe and do ridiculous jumps at 60 mph off of mountains on your skis? Makes total sense. So what else do you do besides mountain bike and play it safe on the bunny slopes?

I recently got into Warhammer 40k. Yep, kind of a nerd.

Zane admits to playing this game. The nerd's faces have been cut out to protect them from cyberbullying

Zane admits to playing this game. The nerd’s faces in this photo have been cut out to protect them from cyber-bullying. Zane, however, should be bullied relentlessly.

Kind of? Is that like Dungeons and Dragons? Do you use a twelve-sided die? 

Kinda. It’s pretty interesting actually. It’s like, set in a dystopian science-fantasy universe and you have these miniature characters that you can buy and paint an–

–Let’s stop you right there. You are now a galactic nerd. Changing subjects completely,  what do you like that we carry in the shop? 

I really want a Pinarello Dogma XC. It looks so cool -not like anything else on the market. I love how the seat stays are separated.

Zane is a little too excited about the Pinarello Dogma XC. Not sure if you can blame him though

Zane is a little too excited about the Pinarello Dogma XC. Not sure if you can blame him though. Sooo many ladies wishing they were that bike right now…

I have an Osprey bag that I really like too. The back support is awesome and it has tons of pockets. The material is really durable. I’m rough on stuff. To quote my dad, I go through $#!+ like candy.

Do you like candy? 

Not really. Not much of a sweet tooth.

Zane or 'Zanye' to the ladies, letting everybody know that winners don't use drugs but they do use Osprey bags. Yeah!

Zane or ‘Zanye’ to the ladies, letting everybody know that winners don’t use drugs, and they pack their dreams into Osprey bags. Yeah!

I really want a pair of the Assos shorts; the T.équipes. I’m sold on the chamois they’ve built into that. I love lightweight, race-y stuff and those shorts are designed to be raced in.

So I know we have a couple nick names for you at the shop: Zané, Ender’s Zane, Easy Z, Dwayne Zane, Zanetopia, Zanye (like Kanye; obviously our apologies to Kanye), Zanskrit, The Ender from Contender. Fort Zane -the list LITERALLY goes on forever- My question is this: Have you ever had a nick name before working here? 

Yeah. A girl called me Loverboy in high school.

That’s because you’re irresistible. One last question I know everyone wants to know, why did your parents name you Zane? 

They’ve never really had an answer

Well it’s equal parts mysterious and classy. It fits you well.

dogma f8 redbackground

Introducing Your New Dream Bike: The Pinarello Dogma F8 (video)

Fresh back from a trip to the Pinarello factory in Treviso Italy, Ryan and Alison were lucky enough to attend the unveiling of Pinarello”s new flagship, the Dogma F8. By the size of their eyeballs when they came back, we could tell this was a pretty special bike.

Let’s take a look…

The new DOGMA F8 from Pinarello is built out of Toray's new T11001K Dream Carbon

The new DOGMA F8 from Pinarello is built out of Toray’s new T11001K Dream Carbon.

Pedigree

Over the past two years, Pinarello’s last DOGMA, the 65.1, has earned the distinction of being the most titled bike on the planet. It’s been ridden to victory in the Tour de France twice, as well as having a World Championship and more than 100 Pro Tour race victories under it’s wheels as well. The bike has been hailed as an instant classic. It’s so ubiquitious with the world of high-end road bikes that many utter “benchmark” just as readily as they say DOGMA.

So what do you do if you’re Pinarello and you want to build a worthy follow up to legendary bike?

You impress the hell out of everyone by introducing a bike with the same winning pedigree but that’s also lighter, stiffer and ridiculously more aerodynamic.

 

The new DOGMA F8 offers it’s riders: 

Pinarello is very proud of how the new DOGMA F8 improves on the 65.1 in a few categories. But we were most impressed with:

A stiffer frame than the previous DOGMA, but 120 grams lighter (frame + fork)

By utilizing TORAY’s new T11001K Dream Carbon with Nanoalloy Technology, Pinarello has been able to give the new F8 a stiffness to weight ration that is 12% higher than the DOGMA 65.1. The TORAY T11001K that Pinarello chose for their new DOGMA is utilized heavily in the aerospace industry on plenty of the jetliners in the sky today. The frame is 80 grams lighter than the 65.1. And Pinarello also designed a new fork for the F8 that is, again, not only stiffer, but 40 grams llighter and more aero as well.

A Massively More Aero Frame

And that leads us into the other big news on the DOGMA F8, Pinarello has worked very hard to improve the aerodynamics of the frame. So hard, in fact, that the new F8 has an astonishing 47% improvement in aerodynamics over the DOGMA 65.1. By redesigning not just the fork, but each tube shape utilized on the frame, the F8 has adopted a “flatback” style of tubing. Where the front of the tubing is designed to cut through the wind and the trailing edge of the tube is shaped to allow the wind to dissipate over it without creating much turbulence at all.

The new tube design for the DOGMA F8 creates an phenomenal aero advantage over the older 65.1

The new tube design for the DOGMA F8 creates an phenomenal aero advantage over the older 65.1

Forks That Act Like Wind Sails

It sounds like Pinarello have really done their aero homework. In fact, the fork they designed for the F8 is giving riders a very special advantage. According to Pinarello:

‘With aerodynamic sections derived directly from the Bolide, the F8 fork legs act as sails that promote forward motion in crosswind conditions. This effect is amplified when riding in stronger winds. The wind has always been an inevitable resistance that increases rider fatigue and hinders performance. Now with the Dogma F8, cyclists are able to exploit it.”

That’s some very impressive engineering from an already impressive company. But the Dogma still maintains its legality with the UCI (it’s officially been approved -and even sports a graphic to tout it!)  and even throws out some cool features like a removable front derailleur support for time trial applications, a 3rd hole on the seat tube to choose where you place your water bottle cage, a (very!) comprehensive 13 different sizes to choose from and even an option to customize the color of your F8 with their MyWay program.

Pinarello have definitely done it again with the Dogma F8!

The bike debuts at the Critérium du Dauphiné, beginning in Lyon on June 8th. And you’re favorite friendly neighborhood bike shop is going to be getting some of these gorgeous frames in! Call us or stop by to check them out!

Throwback Thursday – 1973 Colnago Super

The Colnago Super was one of the bikes that Eddy Merckx and the Molteni Team rode back in the good old days. This bike rolled into the shop a few days ago to get some new pedals installed and everyone around wanted to take a glimpse and check it out for themselves. Whether it be the Columbus tubing, the Campagnolo components or the matching Silca frame pump that runs the length of the toptube, this bike is certainly super-duper. Check out the photos below!

Colnago Super

Columbus Tubing

Concor Saddle

Colnago Concor Crankeset

Colnago Super Bar

Colnago_Super_Headtube

Colnago Super ChainStay

peter h

Staff Infection: Peter Barrett

 

For this week’s Staff Infection we’re lucky enough to talk to a gentlemen by the name of Peter Barrett. Peter joined Contender just a few month’s ago when he moved back to Salt Lake from Seattle. Even though he’s only been here a short time, he comes to Contender with ten years of bike shop experience; so it’s pretty obvious that the man knows his stuff. Rumor has it his nickname is the man of steel. Let’s find out why:

Two legends coming together at Contender Bicycles: Peter Barrett and his favorite bike, the Cannondale CAAD 10.
Two legends coming together at Contender Bicycles: Peter Barrett and his favorite bike, the Cannondale CAAD 10.

Where else have you lived besides Salt Lake City? 

I’ve lived in a lot of places. My dad was in the Air Force so I’ve spent time in Alaska, Norway, Washington State and plenty of other places.

What was your favorite place you lived? 

I’d say Salt Lake. I was here for 14 years before I moved back in February. Salt Lake has awesome snow and awesome bike riding. I love snowboarding here.

How many bikes do you have? Which one is your favorite?

I have six bikes and my favorite really depends on the day. I’m loving my new carbon Scott Scale 720. I also have a steel road bike that I built.

YOU BUILT?? How did you get into building frames?

I started building frames seven years ago. I met a guy who built frames locally here in Salt Lake after an accident where he had almost cut his arm off with a chainsaw. He needed help finishing frames he was working on so I started learning from him. From there I went to the UBI frame building school in Portland. I also attended their wheel building school.

So how many bikes have you built? 

Well, like I said, I helped out with numerous frames here in SLC before I went to school and started building my own. So far I’ve built two and right now I just started planning my third; It’s going to be a disc gravel bike.

Peterbuilt: Peter shows off the custom steel bike he built himself and his favorite Giro New Road wool shirt.
Peterbuilt: Peter shows off the custom steel bike he built himself and his favorite Giro New Road wool shirt.

Peter, let’s get serious here for a second, is steel real? 

Yes. Steel is real. Really real.

What are some of your favorite things we have in the shop? 

I love SIDI shoes. Nothing like wrapping your toes in some fine Italian footwear. I just got a pair of the Dominators in camouflage. So awesome and so new.

Peter showing off his brand new SIDI Dominators in Camo. If it looks like he's not holding anything up, it means the camouflage is working.
Peter showing off his brand new SIDI Dominators in camo. If it looks like he’s not holding anything up, it means the camouflage is working.

I also like the Giro New Road line of clothing because of the materials they’re using. I’m a fan of wool. Their mobility trouser is damn comfortable. I own numerous pairs.

Peter showing off the Mobility Pant from Giro. How could you NOT buy pants from this guy?
Peter showing off the Mobility Pant from Giro. How could you NOT buy pants from this guy? Adorable.

If you ride a steel bike, do you have to wear wool? 

You should.

Favorite bike we carry in the shop? 

I have to say that I really like the Cannondale CAAD 10 bike. It’s dollar-per-awesome ratio is super high. Much like myself.

What’s your favorite Pixies album? 

The one with the naked lady on the front, Surfer Rosa.

 

You dig the old school stuff. And I dig that. You’re all about wool clothing and steel bikes. Is it safe to assume that people call you the Man of Steel?

Yeah, I usually I don’t respond to any other name. But that’s the only assumption that’s safe to make about me.

Throwback Thursday – Ryan’s Colnago Carbitubo

Throwback Thursday – Ryan’s Colnago Carbitubo

When this bike rolled into the shop and was for sale, Ryan’s ears perked up. Having always been obsessed with the downtube design Ryan quickly made an offer and the bike was his. This is one bike that has entered the Littlefield quiver and is here to stay. That is saying something from the man that turns over bikes like no one’s business. At some point the frame will get refinished but for now Ryan is rolling it with the original paint job.

This early 90′s Colnago Carbitubo is a classic Italian road bike with lots of style. A unique offering from Colnago, the Carbitubo was a carbon tubed bicycle with aluminum lugs.  One unique and easily identifiable feature is the twin downtube design. Presumably an attempt to make a bike that is horizontally rigid and vertically compliant, the split downtube is eye catching to say the least. Ariostea was an Italian professional cycling team from 1984 to 1993 that rode this particular bike.

Colnago

Colnago_Downtube

Colnago_BB

Colnago_Drive

Colnago_Fork

Colnago_Headtube

Colnago_Crank

Colnago_Split

Colnago_Cassette ariostea_team

blake hero

Staff Infection: Blake Vatne

For this weeks Staff Infection, we’re going to spend some time with Mr. Blake Vatne, a native Minnesotan who moved to Utah to pursue his degree in Exercise Physiology. If you’re a regular at our store than you’ve probably benefited from the man’s encyclopedic knowledge of all things bike; which is what you’d expect from a guy who started working for Contender way back in ought-six (2006 for those of you who don’t speak prospector). We think of Blake as the Stephen Hawking of the shop. Blake is our go-to for our fits as well as our lactate testing. Which means he must be as smart as a theoretical physicist, theoretically….

Anyway, let’s spend some time with the blue-eyed devil and see what we can learn:

How long have you been doing the bike fits for Contender?

I’ve been doing the Biomechanic Fits for over two years now. It’s been an very positive experience to work with customers so closely. Every body is different and a good fit can make or break your experience on a bike.

Do you ever race your bike?

I used to race mountain and I’ve done a little road and cyclecross. I like to think of myself as a Renaissance man. I think the ladies appreciate that.

I know they do.

How many bikes do you own right now? Do you have a favorite?

I have six beautiful bicycles. They’re like my children. I love them all for different reasons.

Blake posing with his favorite tool in the shop to go fast: a TIME bicycle

Blake posing with his favorite tool in the shop to go fast: a TIME bicycle

Ahhh. So which one is the fat kid then?

I have a Red Schwinn Stingray. He’s a fatty.

Mountain sounds like your favorite discipline, what’s your favorite mountain ride?

I’m a sucker for the Crest Trail

So what else do you do when you’re not riding or working at the shop?

I take my dog out. She has a very active bladder. When I’m not doing that I love to read. I’m real heavy into the classics. Not to brag, but as a Renaissance man, literature is kinda my thing. For instance, right now I’m re-reading the entire Goose Bumps series.

I actually really enjoy cooking. I’ll cook anything new and spicy. I’m really into Thai and Indian lately. I love cooking scrambled eggs or a good curry. Like I said, Renaissance man.

What’s your favorite race?

Paris-Roubaix. It’s a blood fest and it’s badass.

What are some of your favorite things we carry at the shop? 

I really love the TIME bikes we carry. They’re all awesome.

Is that what you ride? 

Yep. I’ve got an RXR that I’ve had for three seasons. I love it. But I also love Ritchey components. I think they’re really smart. Tom Ritchey is the man. He has the sweetest mustache in all of cycling. I’m a big fan of DZ Nuts InHeat. I use the high heat formula.

Blake's hero, and the man behind Ritchey components, Tom Ritchey and his mustache of the millennium. Blake says if this post get's 100 shares on Facebook, he's going to grow one just like it!

Blake’s hero, and the man behind Ritchey components, Tom Ritchey (and his mustache of the millennium). Blake says if this post get’s 100 shares on Facebook, he’s going to grow one just like it.

Doing the fits and studying Exercise Physiology, I think it’s great that we offer the eSoles footbeds for cycling shoes. It’s the best investment you can make for comfort on the bike. Your feet are the most important connecting point on the bike and the eSoles take care of your feet.

Blake showing off his love of Ritchey bars and the fact that he always carries a tube of DZ Nuts InHeat with him

Blake showing off his love of Ritchey bars and the fact that he always carries a tube of DZ Nuts InHeat with him

Hmmm. All this leads us to the inevitable question: Who’s your favorite rapper? 

Bone Thugs. Always has been. Always will be.


If you were a Bone Thug, what would your name be? 

Pretty sure It’d be B-Money Tha Viking Thug.

That sounds legitimately menacing. Any advice to the kids? 

Yeah. Practice good posture. It’s honestly really important.

Spoken like a true viking…