Wordless Wednesday

Wordless Wednesday

2011 Giro d’Italia Preview

The 2011 Giro d’Italia, the first of the 3 Grand Tours of the cycling season, starts on Saturday.  Known for its unpredictability and excitement, not to mention the rabid tifosi, last year’s Giro will be a tough one to outdo.  Don’t remember the crashes, lead changes and climbing exploits that led to Ivan Basso’s victory of the final pink jersey last year? Then check out this race highlight reel to get caught up on what happened:

This year’s route promises more outstanding bike racing, with a route celebrating the Risorgimento, or unification of Italy in the 19th century.  This year’s Giro will roam all over Italy, in a wide-ranging route from the Alps all the way down to the slopes of Mount Etna on Sicily.

Many people are proclaiming this edition of the Giro as one of the toughest Grand Tours in history, and one look at the stage profiles bears out that assessment.  With 8 mountain stages on tap, including an uphill time trial, this is a Giro for the climbers (not that Tyler Farrar, Mark Cavendish and Alessandro Petacchi won’t battle it out in the sprints when they get the chance!).  Alberto Contador has said that this Giro would be the hardest 21-stage race of his life.

And yes, and we did say Alberto Contador; participating in his first Grand Tour since his infamous drug test during the Tour de France, Contador will be vying for his 6th Grand Tour title.  But he’s not the only one with a shot at the final maglia rosa in Milan this year.  Ivan Basso may have opted not to defend his title this year, but his young teammate Vincenzo Nibali (seen below in the pink jersey) will try to build on his triumph at the 2010 Vuelta a Espana, while Italian Michele Scarponi and former winner Denis Menchov will also be contenders for the overall (and don’t rule out Menchov’s Geox-TMC teammate and 2008 Tour de France champion Carlos Sastre).

But knowing the Giro, all we can be sure of is that the race will be filled with the twists, turns and surprises that make the Giro d’Italia so entertaining.  If you want to dress the part while watching the race, you can always pick up a pro jersey from Katusha, Vacansoleil or (a personal favorite) the always distinctive Lampre-ISD kit:

And you might as well pick up a pro-level helmet while you’re at it, like the sleek Lazer Helium or the brand new, and super-light, Giro Aeon:

Or you could just go all out and pick up a pro-level ride in honor of the Giro, such as the Fuji Altamira 3.0 road bike, or the race-tested Focus Izalco Team Replica road bike:

So are you excited for this year’s Giro d’Italia yet?  We sure are, and we hope to have so extra-special, behind-the-scenes footage and stories to share with you during the second week of the race!  Stay tuned for details!

Cyclocross Season Wrap-up

The long cyclocross season here in North Carolina has finally drawn to a close, but not before the guys and gals on the Performance Bicycle team proceeded to have a blast racing, spectating, and otherwise torturing themselves on their Fuji and Focus cyclocross steeds.

Cross racing is a short, intense, and usually painful experience, but you find yourself wanting to do it all over again the next day!  Plus it helps to have a big and varied team like ours, so that there were always teammates there to cheer/heckle you when it was time to push yourself to the limit.

The races even managed to be fun when you found yourself hopelessly tangled in the course tape, hoping that your friends weren’t there to see it (but this always happened right in front of the biggest crowds).

And if you found yourself in the back of the pack, we could count on our teammates to keep things interesting–sometimes with a round of “human barrier” jumping (don’t try this at home)!

Of course it’s nice to win too, and we had our fair share of podiums and even an overall series win to our teams credit this season, not that we’re bragging.

But now that our season is done, it’s time to sit back and watch the real pros duke it out for the coveted World Championship titles.  This year the Worlds are being held in Sankt Wendel, Germany, with the elite men’s and women’s races scheduled for Sunday afternoon (German time), but there will be a whole weekend of racing when you factor in the Under-23 and Junior titles up for grabs.

In the men’s elite race the favorites have to the Belgians Sven Nys and Niels Albert or defending champ Zdenek Stybar, but don’t count out the American team of veterans Jonathan Page, Tim Johnson, Jeremy Powers and young gun Jamey Driscoll.  The women’s elite race has a bevy of contenders as well, including defending champion Marianne Vos and four-time champion Hanka Kupfernagel, but American hopes rest squarely with Katie Compton, who has already won five World Cup races and her seventh straight US national title this year!

Needless to say, we’ll be watching somehow or some way this weekend.  How about you?

Dreambikes Wrap-Up

If you haven’t been paying attention this past month, or if you’ve just stumbled across our blog recently, we’ve been talking up the dreambikes auction quite a bit. Sunday, December 19 marked the end of the last auction, so we thought we’d take a moment to give you the highlights.

For those of you just tuning in, the dreambikes program was started by crankbrothers to help benefit Hans Rey’s charity, Wheels4Life. They partnered with premiere frame builders Ibis, Titus, Focus and Tomac, and component and accessories makers SRAM, Rock Shox, Avid, Fi’zi:k and Continental Tires to create a stable of ten impeccably equipped, one-of-a-kind dream bikes that were displayed at cycling events across the western U.S. and Europe.

With the help of Performance Bicycle, crankbrothers auctioned off each of the dreambikes over the past five weeks. By the close of the final auction on Sunday, December 19, the dreambikes project had raised a total of $35,546 for Wheels4Life. Those proceeds will enable Wheels4Life to improve the lives of hundreds of people around the world who desperately need a bike for getting to work, school or accessing/providing health care.

Thanks to all of you who participated in the dreambikes auction. Your generosity is truly an inspiration to us, and Performance Bicycle is proud to contribute to a program that improves the world through the culture of cycling.

For those of you who want to make a difference but didn’t take part in the auctions, don’t worry, there’s still time to help. Right now we’re selling the 2010 GT Wheels4Life Trekking Bike—and donating a portion of the proceeds of these limited-edition GTs to Wheels4Life.

If you’re in the market for a comfortable hybrid, this is the bike to buy if you’d like to help Hans Rey and Wheels4Life carry on their mission of providing low-cost bikes to people in the developing world. You can also donate $10 by texting ‘WHEELS’ to 85944. Don’t forget to reply ‘YES’ to confirm (USA only).

To learn more about what Hans Rey and Wheels4Life are doing, visit PerformanceBike.com or Wheels4Life.org.

Final dreambikes auction: Titus Rockstar 29

Bidding ends this Sunday on the last 2 dreambikes in the auction from Hans Rey and the team at crankbrothers!  Up for bid are 2 one-of-a-kind mountain bikes from Titus and Focus, and each of these dreambikes sport some serious style to go along with their equally impressive trail performance.

Of course the best part about the the dreambikes auctions is that all of the proceeds from  will support Hans Rey’s Wheels4Life charity with their work to provide bikes to deserving people in developing countries.  So far, over $27,000 has been raised by the dreambikes auctions, which will be used to provide bikes for people that deperately need them to get to school, to work, or to provide health care to patients in remote locations.

There are 2 selections up for bid this week, but you can’t go wrong with either one.  One dreambike is this size medium Focus Raven carbon hardtail, which weighs in at 20.2lbs and is ready-to-race with a full SRAM XX component group:

The other option is this size medium Titus Rockstar 29 carbon mountain bike, which only weighs in at 26.7lbs with its 29″ wheels:

Don ‘t let the elegantly shaped tubes and refined butting profiles fool you into thinking the Titus Rockstar 29 is bred for a life of quiet leisure—this good-looking bad boy is made to roll hard, roll fast and roll long. Over just about anything in its way. From roots and rocks, to ravines, ruts and roadkill, there’s just no stopping the Rockstar once you set those big ol’ 29” wheels in motion. For those rare occasions when you simply must arrest your momentum, Titus has spec’d the fabled Avid Elixir CR hydraulic disc brake, front and rear. With gold-toned Cobalt wheels, handlebar, stem, grips and seatpost from crankbrothers, and SRAM X0/X9 drivetrain, the dreambikes edition Titus Rockstar 29 is a race-ready XC rig that’ll have you giggling like a groupie before you finish your first ride.


Just remember to get your bid in before this final auction ends on Sunday 12/19 at 8PM ET.  If you’re curious about what you missed out on already, check out the rest of the dreambikes on our website.

What are you waiting for… don’t miss your chance to bid on a bike & change a life!

Final dreambikes auction: Focus Raven

Here it is… the final week to become the envy of any ride by getting your hands on a one-of-a-kind dreambike from Hans Rey and the team at crankbrothers!  Bidding has already begun on the last 2 mountain bikes from Titus and Focus, so it’s time to act if you want to bid on these gorgeous rolling works of art (that also happen to be trail-shedding machines!)

All of the proceeds from the dreambikes auctions will support Hans Rey’s Wheels4Life charity in their work to provide bikes to deserving people in developing countries, bikes that make a difference in whether or not these people can get to school, to work, or to provide health care to patients in remote locations.

This final dreambikes auction serves up some serious off-road firepower.  Up for bid is this size medium Titus Rockstar 29 carbon mountain bike, which weighs in at 26.7lbs with 29″ wheels:

If a flat-out racing rocket is more your speed, also up for auction is this size medium Focus Raven carbon hardtail! This race-ready steed weighs in at 20.2lbs and sports a full SRAM XX component group:

If Edgar Allen Poe’s dour avian interlocutor was ever to be reincarnated as a mountain bike, the Focus Raven would be the logical choice. This exotic-looking, German-built carbon hardtail is a XC racer’s fantasy. It’s feather-light, accelerates like a demon, and handles like a dream. Selected by Germany’s Mountain Bike Magazine as a best-in-class off-road racing machine, and winner of the Eurobike Gold Award, the Raven is the last word in high-end, high-performance hardtails. This unique dreambikes edition sports a Rock Shox SID XX fork, custom crankbrothers cobalt wheels, cobalt 11 bar, stem and seatpost, SRAM XX for go and whoa, fizik Tundra saddle and Continental Race King tires. It’s one-of-a-kind, so when bidding closes, this rare Raven is nevermore.

Just remember to get your bid in before this final auction ends on Sunday 12/19 at 8PM ET.

If you’re curious about what you missed out on already, check out the rest of the dreambikes on our website.  So far the dreambikes auction has raised over $27,000 for Wheels4Life, which will change the lives of people around the world!

What are you waiting for… don’t miss your chance to bid on a bike & change a life!

dreambikes Auction #4: Titus El Guapo

Tick tock, tick tock… time is running out if you want to be a part of this one-of-a-kind dreambikes charity auction! There are only a few days left to bid on this round of mountain bikes from all-around legend Hans Rey and the team at crankbrothers!

In case you haven’t seen these latest creations, up for bid in this 4th dreambikes auction is this size small Focus First XC carbon mountain bike with gorgeous black and gold components:

And also up for auction is this size large Titus El Guapo orange all-mountain monster! The details on this bike are stunning and will turn heads on any trail.

Just remember to get your bid in before this round of the auction ends on Sunday 12/12 at 8PM ET:

If you like ‘em burly, beefy and super-aggressive, the Titus El Guapo just may be your singletrack soul mate. With its massive frame tubing, six inches of travel and aggressive geometry, the El Guapo (the Handsome One) is a charismatic all-mountain ride that will appeal to riders with a lust for trail bike handling and XC bike efficiency and responsiveness. Its performance makes it way more than just another pretty face, but honestly, who could resist this good-looking specimen with its mix of crankbrothers iodine components, SRAM XO/X9, Avid Elixir CR disc brakes, Fizik Gobi XM saddle and Continental Trail King tires? And, remember, it’s a dreambikes edition, so it’s truly one-of-a-kind.

Be sure to check out the rest of the dreambikes, and the remaining bikes up for auction, on our website.

So where can you go wrong?  With the dreambikes auction you get the chance to bid on the mountain bike of your dreams, while also supporting the work of Hans Rey’s Wheels4Life charity.  The proceeds from the dreambikes auction will support Wheels4Life as they provide bikes for people in developing countries who desperately need them to get to school, to work, or to provide health care to patients in remote locations.

So far the dreambikes auction has raised over $20,000 for Wheels4Life, which will change the lives of people around the world!

To create the dreambikes, crankbrothers partnered with premiere frame builders Ibis, Titus, Focus and Tomac, and component and accessories makers SRAMRock ShoxAvidFizik and Continental Tires to create a stable of impeccably equipped, one-of-a-kind dream bikes that were displayed at cycling events across the western U.S. and Europe.

What are you waiting for… don’t miss your chance to bid on a bike & change a life!

dreambikes Auction #4: Focus First XC

There are only 2 weeks (and 4 bikes) left in the dreambikes auction, so time is running out for you to bid on a one-of-a-kind mountain bike from mountain bike legend Hans Rey and the team at crankbrothers!

The dreambikes auction gives you the chance to bid on the mountain bike of your dreams, while also supporting the great work of Hans Rey’s Wheels4Life charity.  The proceeds from the dreambikes auction will support  Wheels4Life in their projects around the globe, providing bikes for people in developing countries who desperately need them to get to school, to work, or to provide health care to patients in remote locations.

So far the dreambikes auction has raised an amazing $22,000 for Wheels4Life, which will change the lives of people around the world!

To create the dreambikes, crankbrothers partnered with premiere frame builders Ibis, Titus, Focus and Tomac, and component and accessories makers SRAMRock ShoxAvidFizik and Continental Tires to create a stable of impeccably equipped, one-of-a-kind dream bikes that were displayed at cycling events across the western U.S. and Europe.

First up for bid in the 4th dreambikes auction is this refined but ready-for-anything size small Focus First XC carbon mountain bike (the gold accents are killer).  Bidding ends Sunday 12/12 at 8PM ET for this beauty (and a size large Titus El Guapo):

The trail-taming prowess of a medium-travel enduro bike. The pulse-quickening aesthetics of an elegant XC hardtail. You get both in the category-bending First from Focus. The secret’s in the Full Integrated Rear Suspension Technology (F.I.R.S.T., get it?). By integrating a bump-busting Rock Shox Monarch rear shock into a cavity at the rear of the carbon frame’s top tube, Focus manages to keep the First’s lines clean, sleek and decidedly un-susser-like. This one-of-a-kind dreambikes First is decked out in color-matched crankbrothers cobalt 11 and SRAM X0/X9 components, Fizik saddle and Continental Race King tires for a first-rate mashup of glam looks and go-fast performance that’ll attract tons of attention on descents as well as the start line.

Be sure to check out the rest of the dreambikes, and the upcoming auction schedule, on our website.

So what are you waiting for… don’t miss your chance to bid on a bike & change a life!

dreambikes auction #3: Focus Project 2.0 & Ibis Mojo

Another week, another dreambikes auction, and another chance to bid on a pair of amazing mountain bikes from the team at crankbrothers! So far, we have raised an amazing $15,402… and that’s just from the first 4 bikes!

The best part about the dreambikes auction is that while you are bidding on the mountain bike of your dreams, you will also be supporting Hans Rey’s Wheels4Life charity.  All of the proceeds from the dreambikes auction go straight to Wheels4Life, a non-profit organization that provides bikes for people in developing countries, working directly with communities and individuals who desperately need bikes to provide transportation to get to school, to work, or to provide health care to patients in remote locations.

Hans Rey and his wife, Carmen, are both humbled by the success of the dreambikes program, and Carmen would like to personally thank the auction winners: “Thanks to the generosity of our four auction winners, Wheels4Life is able to get 100 children to school in Uganda, thus giving them an education and a chance of a much better life and 60 healthcare workers out into the field saving lives. That is a pretty amazing achievement. Together we are creating a difference through the gift of a bicycle and we could not do it without incredible people like Christiano Samaro, Ryan Black, Eric Vensel and Jon Martens. On behalf of those children, the nurses and Wheels4Life, we thank you.”

To create the dreambikes, Crankbrothers partnered with premiere frame builders Ibis, Titus, Focus and Tomac, and component and accessories makers SRAMRock ShoxAvidFizik and Continental Tires to create a stable of impeccably equipped, one-of-a-kind dream bikes that were displayed at cycling events across the western U.S. and Europe.

Up for bid in this third dreambikes auction is a super-fun size medium Focus Project 2.0 trail bike:

All mountain. All the time. One ride on the Focus Project 2.0 and your agenda will be set in stone. And roots. And whatever else you point this extravagantly spec’d trail-marauder at. The 150mm-travel alloy frame features the patented Knucklebox 3D-forged rocker for ultra-high stiffness and torsional rigidity that will rocket you up to speed fast and efficiently — and supply the impact-inhaling action you need to keep on rolling long after the trail turns treacherous. This one-of-a kind dreambikes Project 2.0 is spec’d to the nines with crankbrothers iodine wheels and contact bits in orange ano, SRAM X0/X9 drivetrain, a color-coordinated fizik Gobi saddle and Continental tires. A winning bid will make this fearless full-squisher all yours.

Also up for bid is this ridiculously good-looking black-and-gold size medium Ibis Mojo:

Super sexy. Super solid. Super smooth. The Ibis Mojo Carbon is nothing short of superlative. With breakout design and engineering, the Mojo’s technologically advanced carbon frame and swingarm dole out plush and flickable efficiency by the truckload, and unload tons of confidence-inspiring control for taking it to the limits over technical terrain. Outfitted stem to stern with color-matched crankbrothers Cobalt and SRAM X0/X9 components, this one-of-a-kind, dreambikes edition Ibis Mojo Carbon is worth its weight in gold—even more, considering that this elegantly appointed, performance-gilded 5.5” travel dual-susser weighs in south of 26 pounds.

Be sure to check out the rest of the dreambikes, and the upcoming auction schedule, on our website right now.  You’ll definitely want at least one of these bikes!

So what are you waiting for… don’t miss your chance to bid on a bike & change a life!

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