The weekend of May 7th and 8th saw the premiere of a new bicycle festival in „the bicycle capital of
A wide range of bicycle related activities and events were offered, such as guided MTB rides in the
surrounding mountains, an entertaining dirt park short track race on sunday as part of the
Black Forest. Along with a small but no less respectable expo of a number of celebrated national
and international bicycle brands and some custom frame builders.
cyclist. You might have watched some of the videos showcasing all the Fixie Inc models as these
have been praised on prollyisnotprobably.com – I originally planned to visit the guys in their office
this past December, but it didn‘t work out in the end – even better to meet Recep, one of the owners,
in person now and to have a look at their decent bikes. The „Chip Race“ Titanium-roadbike and
the „Pureblood“ Cyclocross-Beast were definite eyecatchers (check out the bottlecap on the stem).
Too bad there is no proper distribution in the US yet.
After that I went straight to see the bikes built by local frame builder Kai Bendixen, who had also
developed some of the Fixie Inc prototypes in the past – a small world, indeed!
The bikes on display included a pink singlespeed crosstype mountainbike and a beautiful
bottlegreen Randonneur-Touringbike. I am planning to meet Kai at his shop later this year
to show you more of his work.
Another great framebuilder I got to meet was Thomas Veidt, who specialized in building bikes for
short people – but of course he is up for anything if you plan to get a custom frame. He brought
a workbench with him and was carving lugs when I got to his booth. One of the bikes he was
showcasing was the first bike he built after he started his own framebuilding business years ago:
A stunning lugged steel roadframe equipped with a vintage Campagnolo nuovo record gruppo from
the late 70s – this bike has been used alot and was far from a perfect untouched condition, but had
soul and style for sure. After miles and miles of riding this bike is now sitting in his living room
he said, just to look at it.
We also talked a little bit about how he would like to show some of his work at the „Oregon Handmade
Bicycle Show“ – an expo way more down to earth than the over-hyped NAHBS he said.
It was great talking to you Thomas!
I didn‘t spend much time at either the Campagnolo or Chris King booth, but I am sure their high
quality components were well received by the bicycle-loving crowd. Now it was time for an
Espresso over at the Biosk-counter where Lars and Julien served the usual great coffee and delicious
snacks – all organic, of course!
My next stop was at the Crema Cycles booth were I talked to Basti for a little while. Crema Cycles
is active in a number of different ways – they sell custom frames by US-brands including Geekhouse
and Independent Fabrications over here in Germany, they organize events such as this „Freiburg Collective
Bike Expo“ or the „Crema Cross“- Tour and are about to go public with their own CremaCycles
Cross Country (26″ & 29″) and Enduro (29″) frames built by Canadian framebuilder Mike Truelove.
More of these frames will be shown at the Eurobike in the summer. (Expect twotoneatl coverage!)
famous for their colorful cycling kits.
But of course the highlight of the weekend was the Rapha Roadride – Jon and I were super proud to
support Rapha and it was a pleasure to put together a route for the ride. Inspired by my post from last
year, Kieran of Rapha Germany asked me to come up with something similar. The challenging terrain of
the ride included three climbs, one of which the Schauinsland-mountain with its 11km ascent, it was the longest.
Outstanding views were guaranteed with this route!
About 40 people gathered Saturday morning in front of Rapha‘s „Mobile Cycle Club“ truck and signed
up for the ride. After Kieran’s introductory words everybody got on their bikes and we were ready to roll.
As we left the city limits it started to get hilly immediately and not long after that the first serious climb
was waiting for us. Of course we didn‘t stay together as a group the whole time, but we all met again on
top of the Schauinsland where snacks and drinks were served. All this worked out surprisingly well and the
whole ride didn‘t see a single puncture. Great!
After a breathtaking descent into the Münstertal valley with topspeeds well over 70km/h, some short
dirtroad and gravel parts, more climbing and great riding through vineyards we got back to the
Expo-grounds about three and half hours after we had left. What a great experience to ride with all these
This event was the first official Rapha event in Germany and marks the beginning of active campaigning
over here. So far the German market has been more or less neglected, but I am sure this will change
from now on. And what a way to start activities here in Germany.
Overall this has been an awesome weekend – amazing weather and great people! Freiburg really is
the „Bicycle Capital of Germany“ and I hope for a new edition of this event next year with even more
exhibitors, more activities and more people showing up.
In other news, I am totally stoked that Jon and his family will be spending the summer here in Freiburg and I am sure
this will lead to many more posts on the blog. Can‘t wait to show you around Jon!
More photos can be found on the European Touches flickr
PS: You can also follow me on twitter for irregular updates from the cycling world over here …
Check out the video of the ride here: twotoneatl.com/2011/05/18/rapha-rides-the-blackforest-video