Product Profile: Louis Garneau Mondo Bib Short & Jersey

For this week’s Product Profile, Ali, from our Clothing division, is here to talk about the brand new 2011 Louis Garneau Mondo bib short & jersey.  The new 2011 clothing lineup from Louis Garneau is packed with advanced technology to enhance fit and performance, plus look great while you ride (as you can see in the cover shot above, from the April 2011 issue of Road Bike Action magazine).

The Louis Garneau Mondo bib short is a really neat piece of equipment. The power band at the leg openings is the most comfortable leg opening you’ll find on any short! There’s no hair pulling or bad “sausage-leg” from a tight silicone gripper, only an aerodynamic fit with a second-skin feel.

Besides the fact that the Ceratek fabric on the hips looks really cool, it has a great purpose; the abrasion resistance it offers is huge. No picks or snags.

Detail of Ceratek material

The bib uppers are Louis Garneau‘s Carbon-X Mesh fabric; it has a high spandex content so if you’re tall, medium or average height for your size, it will fit like it was made for you. And as a bonus, all of the fabrics in the Mondo bib short are UPF/SPF 50 so you don’t have to worry about getting a funny tan on your thigh from a panel here and there that aren’t the same UPF/SPF as the others!

Detail of Carbon X Mesh

Of course all of this high-tech design and fit would be no good without an excellent chamois.  But Louis Garneau has done their homework with the Mondo bib short, as their 4 Motion chamois is great. It has 4-way stretch so it moves with you; preshaped wings so there is no bunching, pinching or weird folding of the pad; high density foam in all of the right places and strategically placed mesh vents to keep you comfortable.

With all of the comforts of a high performance bib, plus a great chamois and technical fabrics, the Louis Garneau Mondo bib short is a piece I believe you’ll find to be worth its weight in gold when you get out on the saddle in a pair.  And to complete this high performance kit, Louis Garneau offers the matching Mondo jersey, featuring the same performance fabrics and fit found in the Mondo bib short.

Happy Presidents Day

It is once again time to celebrate Presidents Day (even though the Federal holiday is actually still called Washington’s Birthday, and not Presidents Day after all).  But it got us thinking, there must be some way that we can tie in cycling to a celebration of our first president (and to Abraham Lincoln as well, if we are using the popular definition of this holiday).  Since the earliest successful commercial bicycles date to the 1860s, we can probably assume that George and Abe never got to try out our favorite 2-wheeled pasttime, notwithstanding this photographic evidence from the Performance HQ Halloween costume contest:

But that doesn’t mean that we can’t find some some connection to cycling.  Take the world of pro cycling, where we find multiple-time US national champion George Hincapie on target to start the Tour de France for a record-tying 16th time (and who last year sported the most patriotic bike/kit imaginable):

Photo copyright Tim de Waele

And of course we can’t forget world road and time trial champion Abraham Olano of Spain (as long as we are making rather tenuous connections to Presidents Day, that is):

Here at Performance, we’ve got our own presidential connections, as we have 5 retail stores in Washington state, plus 2 (soon to be 3) stores in Georgia (a bit of strectch, but go with it).  Plus you can’t forget our store in Lincoln Park, Illinois!  And if you want to show off your Presidents Day pride on the bike, we’ve got 2 Washington, D.C. short sleeve jerseys to choose from, including this sharp-looking number:

Item #10-2788

And if none of our roundabout reasoning really makes sense to you this Presidents Day, you can always just head over to our site to take advantage of our online-only Presidents Day sale!  We’re sure that George and Abe would have wanted you to.

Product Profile: 2011 Diamondback Podium 6

EDIT:  Since the value of the Diamondback Podium 6 we talked about below was recognized by so many of you out there, we don’t have any more in stock online.  But that doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on the great 880 gram frame of the Podium 6, as we still have the Diamondback Podium 5 road bike in stock and ready to ship.  Featuring the Podium carbon frame but with Shimano 105 components, the Podium 5 road bike is another great value from the folks at Diamondback!

Diamondback Podium 5 Item #30-4903

For today’s product profile, we’re bringing you a new ride from an unexpected source.  Our friends at Diamondback have been busy lately, not only refining their lineup of mountain bikes and BMX bikes, but also developing a brand new line of full carbon road bikes.  That’s right, we said full carbon road bikes!  Of course we were intrigued, so our bike product manager, Devlin, took the cross-country flight out to Washington to meet the folks at Diamondback and try out their new bike, the 2011 Podium 6 road bike, on its home turf:

Mercer Island, located on the expansive waters of Lake Washington and only minutes from the greater Seattle area, is host to fast, rolling road rides with steep banked turns and exhilarating descents. When I heard that the crew at Diamondback were going to unveil their 2011 Podium 6 road bike here I was skeptical. After all, a brand steeped in BMX and mountain bike heritage was suddenly going to break in to road biking right at the top with a Shimano Ultegra equipped full carbon frame and fork.

At first glance, the Podium 6 is right on target. The 880 gram frame has all of the characteristics of today’s best carbon road bikes: an oversized tapered head tube fitted with a full carbon fork, massive BB30 bottom bracket for superior stiffness, curved seat and chain stays for added comfort, and an arrestingly minimal top tube. Diamondback product manager Michael Brown appropriately chose an eye-catching FSA SL-K component package and Shimano R530 wheels.

We rolled out of the parking lot at warm up speed. I noticed immediately how stable and comfortable the bike felt. It took little effort to turn over the carbon SLK cranks and the surprisingly spritely wheels accelerated well as the pace picked up. The first hill proved the Podium 6 to be a great climber. The frame was stiff, yet refreshingly compliant. The bike cornered confidently and efficiently on the following descent. The Shimano Ultegra components are well proven to be both lightweight and precise and were well matched to the Podium 6. Overall, the 2011 Diamondback Podium 6 is a fantastic choice for any rider looking for the elusive balance between great all-around road performance at a great price. We look forward to introducing this terrific value to our stores and web site this March.

Getting ready for a photo shoot

Here at Performance, we put a lot of thought, effort and creativity into creating our catalogs and emails.  Our creative team works hard to create graphics and imagery that resonate with and inspire you as a cyclist, like with the cover of our latest catalog:A big part of this process are our photo shoots, where we hit the road (and the trails) to show great new gear and bikes in action.  Back in our early days, the locations for our photo shoots were usually only as exotic as you could find in a radius of about 15 minutes from our headquarters, like this sweet raingear shot taken on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill!  Our models were usually employees (like Chuck Lewis there on the left) or whatever college coed could be convinced to wear a not-so-flattering rain poncho!

Nowadays we travel a little farther afield to get the great images that you’ll find throughout our catalogs and on our website, and our photo shoots can find us anywhere from the mountains of Colorado to the rugged coastline of California.  But in the end the process is the same as it’s always been; planning a photo shoot is first and foremost a story of logistics.  You’ve got to make sure that you’ve got all the right clothing, gear, bikes and people in place before the first frame is shot by the photographer (and we still do use our employees as models for some shoots, because it’s no good if our models don’t look like they know how to ride)!

This is just a sample of the gear that we packed up for our latest photo shoot, and this doesn’t even include the bikes!  As you can see, our creative team has quite the job ahead of them to keep everything and everyone organized over a very busy week of shooting.

And this time we’re going to give you a little behind-the-scenes access to what goes on at one of our photo shoots.  We’ll be there on the shoot, taking pictures and video that we’ll post right from our sunny locale in southern California.  Look for updates next week on our Twitter and Facebook pages, along with right here on the blog!

Spin Doctor Mechanic Profile – Andrew Miller

Spin DoctorFor today’s employee profile, meet Andrew Miller, the Spin Doctor mechanic for our Akron, Ohio store.  Andrew is not only a top-notch Spin Doctor-certified mechanic, he is also gives back to the local cycling community through his work with the Cleveland Area Mountain Bike Association and the Cleveland Bike Alliance.  Read on below to learn more about Andrew, or just swing by our Akron, Ohio store and say hello.

How long have you worked at Performance ?

Since 2009.

How did you get started in cycling ?

I rode bikes as a kid, but I really started riding again after a visit to D.C. with my sister, during which we rented bikes.  I immediately fell back in love with the sport and I haven’t stopped cycling since.

How long have you been cycling ?

It’s been 4 years since I started up again.

What’s type of riding do you like?

Anything with 2 wheels: mountain bike, cyclocross or road!

Do you have any racing experience?

I have raced for 3 seasons: 3 seasons off-road, 2 on the road, and 1 cyclocross.

What are your favorite places to ride?

Medina Reagan Park or Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

What’s your favorite aspect of working in a bicycle store?

Meeting new friends to ride with, and of course seeing all the new gear!

Dream place to ride?

Paris Roubaix or Tour of Flanders.

Photo by Graham Watson via Cycling Weekly

Any cycling goals? Something you’re working toward?

This year I’m trying to get back into shape after 4 months off due to an injury.

Any hobbies outside of cycling?

I’m into music and video games.

How long have you been a mechanic?

1 1/2 years at Performance.

Have you ever wrenched for a pro team/ pro cyclist?

Not yet, but I have had the chance to ride with pro’s Jeff Lenosky and Emily Batty.

Specialties?

I’m best at sprinting and climbing.

Certifications?

I became a certified Spin Doctor in November, 2010.

Club Affiliation?

I’m the current president of the Cleveland Area Mountain Bike Association and a stakeholder in the Cleveland Bike Alliance.

You can find the Akron, Ohio store at:

790 Arlington Ridge, Suite 307
Arlington Ridge Marketplace
Akron, OH 44312
330-644-8133

Store Hours:
11:00AM- 7:00PM Monday- Friday
10:00AM- 7:00PM Saturday
12:00PM- 5:00PM Sunday

View on Google Maps

Happy Groundhog Day

It’s indeed Groundhog Day today, and the big gopher has spoken!

But no matter what Mother Nature has in store for the next 6 weeks (or the next 6 hours), we predict more riding in your future!  Get out there and ride (or maybe hit the trainer)… we promise that you won’t regret it.

We’ll be riding, how about you?

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