Saturday, September 29, 2007
I must have talked for more then 20 minutes cause there seems to be alot that was cut out. I did the Viento as well and Dalen did the Rampant and its unfortunate we didn't get this into the vid - oh well.
Drove back from Vegas and i'm too wiped to do much of an update but give me a day or two and I'll post up something soon.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Weather again is absolutely beautiful with a nice cool breeze blowing in from somewhere - being from Vancouver you can always count on the North Shore Mountains to point you to north so its easy to forget what direction your heading in other places - but I think its coming from the west.
We'll be having a virtual tradeshow booth on mtbr.com and I'll post up the link when I know its up. We did all the video and pictures for it on day 2 and I just sent all the text off so it should be up in a few days. If you're reading the blog you probably know about all the stuff but its another chance to see the bikes in their element all covered in dust and dirt.
Jason and Justin from Sicklines came by also and took a couple of Wildcards out for a rip. They also got some wicked pics so I'm hoping they don't delay in throwing them up on their site.
Great to get Dave from NSMB to take out the Rune for a tear... we missed Cam but he is quite a popular guy so its totally understandable.
It was awesome to finally, after 4 years, to finally meet Jeremy from Speedgoat. I commented on his ink and got the wicked background about his inspiration for it.
We'll the demo is done for 2007 and we're pretty juiced to hear that people we're so stoked and thought the bikes were killer.
Monday, September 24, 2007
So the trip down unfortunately saw me being pulled over by the Oregon state troopers and they were nice enough to give me a $426 ticket for excessive speed. I'm usually tearing it up on my bike and its near impossible for me to go the speed limit... well it cost me this time.
Weather was crazy on the way down and Dalen [Trident Sports] the guy I drove down with got hit with a crazy rain storm at 2am.
I was trying to get over food poisoning from once of the find fast food establishments we had lunch at. I had the most brutal stomach ache, a fever, and was totally bloated but thankfully that passed within 24hours as we pulled into Las Vegas.
We did a quick setup at the dirt demo, went for some great Mexican Food, and then picked up the 3rd guy John from McCarren airport who was going to do the demo with us. This was after we did a quick run on the rollercoaster thats inside the Sahara hotel - it was a blast.
Checked into the hotel and crashed... it was a long drive non-stop and its hard to sleep properly in the van.
First day of the demo was great and the feedback on the bikes was amazing again. The temparture in Vegas this year doesn't seem to be nearly as hot as I'm usually used to so it was definitely a nice change and made the demo that much easier.
John was tearing up the little pump track that they built, but mostly we had to work the booth. If I get lucky tomorrow I'll be able to get a shuttle in and experience riding up packed on the flat deck.
Oh... looks like I got head out for dinner... I'll finish off day 1 and write about day 2 tomorrow.
One last thing... check this out... Andreas from Bali Mountain Bike and Adventure Sports [our Indonesian distributor] made these. I think they're so killer and will find out if I can get more... what do you think would you want something like this?
Friday, September 21, 2007
Well these words sound like magical for someone from the old continent. Then after years of saving and dreaming I did the trip to BC.
I think for most of you these words will be like “hum CBC is just next door”. For me it’s like being a 5 years old kid the morning of Christmas.
I’am at Paris Charles De Gaulle airport ready with my boarding pass it’s pouring rain. My Scream is fine his dakine box . I have a rush of image in my head from video or magazines. Now I’m going to BC waw that’s really I’m not dreaming!
14 hours later on the Canadian ground in Vancouver airport
My friend (Cervo) pick me us with my buddies and say these words: “hey guys let’s ride it’s only 4 o clock what do you think about riding CBC?”
This question still resonate in my head one month after.
The answer was “OH YES Let’s go!!!!!”
Crossing Vancouver was for me unreal big building, Stanley park, big bridges, sea, mountains, hot chicks…. Waw is the paradise here ??
We arrive at CBC Parking lot well now time to do mechanic. Building a bike fast with close to no sleep and being sure that everything is tighten is funny. In a half hour the bikes were build nice work guys! Let’s ride ! CBC was for me really crazy flow awesome trail building(I was a member of Wagrain mountain bike park Trail crew last summer) the armouring is such a beauty. (now I want do that on my home trail well there is no rocks…)
The ride was unreal we were half a sleep it’s like 5 in the morning in France that was crazy . We did CBC to salvation to pingu to team pangor (don’t really remember the order sorry Locals). Stoping in front of every stunt, every piece of slat of cedar I rode my first real log ride !!
Then we drove to whistler on the famous sea to sky highway such a nice scenerary!
We crashed in a friend of friend unit at brio staff housing it 11 here and like 7 in france what a DAY!!
The following day was the time of accommodation and season pass buying. We didn’t even set up our stuff at our place we went straight for a ride!
And now we are discovering Whistler trails : B-line, Crank it up, heart of darkness for warm up a couple of times.
Then someone said” let’s ride A line ! “
And we did half a dozen of A line lap or Dirt merchant to A line . I started to be really tired then on my last run on A line I took a bad line and crashed on the technical section. That was just a simple OTB on this tiny rock face. But my Elbow hurt quite a lot, Pull the sleeve of my jacket and waw! A nice hole in my arm was here just deep enough to put a pen in it. I roll slowly down to a patroller who advice me to go to the clinic! Well what a holiday beginning!
After 2 days off the trail I ripped new lower crank it up, A line dirt merchant and others.
I met Alan very shortly just the time for me to do a quick test on the wildcard. The geometry is great the only thing this bike need it flipping doing 360 it’s like a mix between a dirt jump hardtail and a freeride that should be a weapon for A line and other jumpy trail.
The next few days was just ride ride ride and beer at the GLC.
The only thing is that it took us 5hours to find woodlot. We did the push up and start going down platinium but at the second jump cervo (my buddy) crashed pretty hard then we rode down slowly and we walk down heckle and jeckel. These are nice trails.
Back in whistler we spend time doing photo doing the sweep and drinking beer perfect holidays for mountain bikers. Some afternoon chilling at lost lake.
We did some XC runs (the scream can really pedal!!) These runs are really nice I advice everyone to try : Fountain of love, Pinocchio…
I met Shin at the Fitzsimmons lift that was great to share our idea about riding , whistler, banshee. When you meet banshee riders you know you are in a Pride and gives us a kind of identity among this massive business of bikes
One of my buddies left Vancouver one week before me then we drove back to Vancouver and we rode CBC before dropping him at the airport. After that we did bit of tourism: Grandville island the steam clock …
Then we went to Seymour for a ride we pushed up for 30 min but the night was running after us a local told us that we can go on the top but the ride would be a bit dark (That wasn’t a bit ) It was real night then the ride down wasn’t that great it was sketchy but we discovered Vancouver by night it was really beautifull.
The few days was just riding the park. And we did the peak to creek ride on Babylon. This run was really nice and long ( I thought that a Rune would be the perfect bike for this)
This was my last run on whistler I can’t believe that it’s all ready finish one month it’s too short I gonna miss all the run, the bears crossing the boneyard, the kokannee at GLC, the women Wednesday. Now I have the Whistler deprivation! I ‘ll be back!
I want thank Banshee Bikes, jay, keith, Spinergy to allow me to ride on awesome stuff and which give me so much pleasure and fun. I want thank Cervo, Molly, David, to be such good buddies for this trip, Shin for his availability and passion of bikes that was great to put a face on an internet name.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
My life is all about bikes. My first job was a bike mechanic at the age of 14. Now, with ten years experience wrenching on bikes, my skills have put me through college and survived me. Currently I wrench for Gear Exchange in Glenwood Springs Colorado. I believe it is the best bike shop in the Roaring Fork Valley and beyond. And working in six bikes shops previously, I know a good bike shop when I work in one. The owners, Darren and Kendal, are the most laid back, carefree guys I have ever met. And then there is Max and Matt which both add huge to the overall coolness of the shop. You couldn’t ask for a better place to work.
Along with Gear Exchange I am the team mechanic for Team Dead Bros/Banshee. Team founder and leader Linden Carlson is also the local Colorado rider/rep for Banshee Bikes. I can remember the first time meeting this tall, skinny dude with a shaved head and long goatee… I was impressed by his no fear, go get it attitude on riding.
One story in particular to share on Linden: We were in Angel Fire New Mexico for the season opening race of the Mountain States Cup Series. Neither of us was racing, we were simply there for the sheer joy of bikes and the love to ride them. Linden and I couldn’t get on the lift as we didn’t have a number plate, so what did we do? Sat around and drank beer! Well that and ride up hill A LOT!!!
We found a beautiful newly made bridge drop that most people were very hesitant to hit. As we came up to the hit Linden hopped off his bike, took a quick look then pushed back up. Now mind you he was riding a Morphine with a “not so good front shock”. He jumped on his four year old machine and slayed the drop. Not only did he do the drop 15 plus times for a photo, he also put sick style into every hit.
As I was sitting down at the bottom shooting, I could hear people yelling from the lift, “do it you pussy!” “Don’t think! Just go!” But the funny thing was I am sure those guys that were yelling crap from the lift were the same guys that slowly rolled up to the drop on there big 7+ in full suspension rigs and bottomed out the suspension with no style and barely holding the landing. And as they rode away Linden would come flying up, nail the hit and throw his bike like a baby doll.
When riding with Linden I can only hope to stay close on his tail, but if we go uphill… Look out! “Come on bro, push them over!!!” Now speaking of myself and riding… up until this summer I was riding a Specialized Rockhopper from 1998. Needless to say it was outdated and not the best ride to try and keep up with Linden. Thankfully Jay, and Banshee Bikes hooked me up with a beautiful Scirroco. It was night and day when I jumped on that bike. I felt like I was 100 times better of a rider. The geometry and parts set up just eats up the downhill and controls like a sports car. That bike has brought a new love for mountain biking to me.
I have been a part of Banshee Bikes for three years now. My images can be seen on the website as well as the content pages and the cover of the ’07 catalog. Now as the 2008-year approaches I hope to be even more involved with the progression of Banshee Bikes through my photography and images. I believe that Banshee Bikes is a feel good, love the sport company. I may have a hard time reaching Jay, and it’s probably because he is either up to his eyebrows in work for Banshee, or he is out rockin’ one of his own bikes. Anyone that I talk to that is looking at a new bike I ask if they have ridden a Banshee. And it isn’t because I am involved with the company; it is because I truly believe they are one of the best, well built bikes in the world right now. So I ask you… have you ridden a Banshee Bike?
Want to see more of my work? Check me at the following places:
Facebook.com –Devon Balet
Monday, September 17, 2007
One thing I should mention is that you can really notice the change from DH to FR when you move the shock into each respective position... you'll even notice it just trying to wheelie the bike and how in the DH position its alot harder then in the FR position. I can't wait to personally start screwing with all the settings and rip it down a few of the shore trails.
We will be doing the Interbike dirt demo and will have all the bikes out there for anyone that is coming out to Bootleg Canyon. Hopefully we'll see you there!
Sunday, September 16, 2007
We also have a kickass employee purchase this year too so if you work in the shops, then we recoqnize you probably work damn hard, don't get paid that much, and love bikes so we'll help you out.
Ok so here they are
Frames: retail: USD/CDN
Viento 29er ..............................590/691
Pyre w/ Float RP23 .................1645/1831
Pyre w/ Swinger X3 .................1510/1703
Rampant w/ RP2 ......................1618/1742
Rampant w/ Swinger X3 ...........1510/1672
Rune w/ DHX 5.0 Air ................1813/2035
Rune w/ DHX 5.0 Coil ..............1760/1969
Rune w/ DHX 3.0 COIL .............1593/1805
Rune w/ Evolver X4 Air ............1618/1835
Rune w/ Swinger X4 Coil ...........1535/1735
WildCard w/ DHX 5.0 Air ..........1855/2056
WildCard w/ DhX 5.0 Coil .........1800/1999
WildCard w/ DHX 3.0 Coil .........1619/1812
WildCard w/ Evolver X4 Air .....1694/1877
WildCard w/ Swinger X4 coil ....1575/1598
Scythe w/ DHX 5 Coil ...............1800/1999
Scythe w/ DHX 3 Coil ................1619/1832
Scythe w/ Swinger X6 Coil ........1640/1817
Guillame has posted up the EU prices for France... thanks for posting that up its definitely appreciated
I'll post up prices of the completes next but i need to also post up the specs or you'll have no reference.
These prices are the MSRPs for North America, dealers can sell for less.
The price difference between USA and Canada given the parity of the dollar is due to many factors that are outside our control and have to do with duty and taxes and things like that.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Alan's doing the camera work and just shooting the big screen so as Ken from XXIV our distributor said its a bit Ghetto.
Troy from Rebel Media has tons of footage of the lads killing it on the Red Bull Elevation jumps but I've not been able to get any yet.
Chris played it conservative during CW which is totally cool considering it was eating up and spitting out some of the top pros.
I know its a bit late but here you go.
Also found Chris and Alan on My Space
don't be shy to contact them, they're really cool down to earth guys that would be more then happy answer any questions or hear your comments
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Simon is Banshee's new French DH and 4X racer and he is the guy responsible for helping us get the geometry so bang on.
So far his results have been great. He was the top amatuer racer at the French 4X championships beating all but 4 pros to place 5th overall. Also last night I received this message from Patrick at XCYTT [our French distributor]
There was this weekend the DH Championship of Belgium, Simon wanted to participate but he has no DH bike.
He has therefore done the displacement with the Rampant, the track was technical and not adapted to a bike with small travel, then some riders looked it with astonishment and smile.
Statement, Simon finish fourth, 2 seconds off Nico Vincq, UCI rider.
Patrick - XCYTT"
Me and Keith are super stoked that this bike is proving to be such a contender. So here you are... Simon Cardon
Saturday, September 8, 2007
or download it here
Jason at Sicklines just sent me a quick link to the dirt demo we're doing Bromont in Quebec... scroll down and check out the last bit of news on the Rune here at asilvertouch.com
Friday, September 7, 2007
or download at
Or download a better version here
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
So it is another year -my third actually- where we pack up and head off to the largest bike show in the world. Interbike in comparison is about half the size of what Eurobike is due to the large number of European brands that don't show in the USA. Brands such as Ghost, LaPierre, and Univega are massive over here in Germany but you'd be hard pressed to see someone on the trail in North America with that name on their bike.
The flight from Vancouver was pretty uneventful except for the Ukrainian lady who chatted my ear off about Romainian gypsies fortelling her future in broken English.
Nine hours later on my KLM flight I arrive in Amsterdam [which i like calling 'Hamsterland' cause it rhymes] to wait for my connection to Frankfurt. Honestly I expected more from a KLM flight... the food was terrible and I wasn't going to choke down that thing they called pasta; I managed to get something in the airport before the next flight out on the smaller city hopper - a Fokker which is very similar in size to a Boeing 737.
14 hours later I arrive in Frankfurt. The time change and lack of sleep is starting to kick in because its nearly impossible for me to sleep on a plane sitting in those cramped seats with little room to move or stretch out. The first symptom of jetlag is that out-of-body experience where you seem to be in another world while you run around the airport, collect your baggage, and try to find a transfer to your hotel.
North of Frankfurt is where the taxi is headed. We arrive 40 minutes later in Idstein, pronounced Idschtine, which is this cool old world town [I'll get some pictures later] to look for a hotel to stay at. I've been awake for more then 24 hours and have only the energy for a quick pint of German beer before crashing. It was only a week earlier I was in Taiwan and just managed to adjust my clock back to Vancouver time and now I'm screwing it up again.
Its tuesday morning and I've left the hotel to meet up with our German distributor Shock Therapy for the drive down to Friedrichschafen, it's just north of Vienna in Austria and the place where the Eurobike show will be taking place.
I'm greeted by some familiar faces I haven't seen for a year and a few new ones. After some short pleasantries its back to work loading the last of the gear.
Its about a 4 to 5 hour drive as I pass in and out of consciousness in the backseat of a Ford minivan whizzing down the autobahn. I'm awaken on occassion as Hans, owner of Shock Therapy and driver, lays on the horn and yells some profanity in German at some driver that's failed to adhere to the speed limit and gets in his way. The speed limit on the autobahn [freeway] is go as fast as you can, and if you can't keep up don't dare go in the fast lanes or you'll get an earfull. We're doing over 150Kph but are still passed by BMWs, Mercedes, and Volkswagen going over 170kph. Contrary to popular belief there are speed limits on the autobahn and you can only "open it up" in certain areas.
We arrive in Friedrichschafen, drop our bags off at the Burgerstuble Gasthouse, which is the name of the hotel we'll be staying at, and head to the Friedrichschafen Messe to unload and setup some of the tradeshow booth.
Its now 9pm back at the hotel. We gather around a dinner of snitzel, spetzle, and that oh so tasty German beer, before I call it a day and hit the sack.
Keith arrives tomorrow and I'm sure he'll add somethings to the blog.
Its still one more day of setup before the show starts but I plan to do some scoping of the show as setups going on.
I had planned on writting everyday but everywhere I stayed it was impossible to get an internet connection... I'm kinda pissed about that.
I'm writing from the Frankfurt aiport and the show is over. It was really awesome to see all my friends again and I need to come back to Europe before next year as I had way too much fun this trip.
The show itself was awesome with lots of eye candy however me and Keith were mostly slammed with questions, so we had to spend 99% of our time working the booth.
I was stoked to see the interest in all the bikes and 2 German mags left with the Wildcard and Rune which was a bit unexpected but a pleasant surprise.
Keith spent some of his time trying to court Ryan Leech over to Banshee - the Norco booth was right across from us - so that was funny to see... but I think they were mostly talking bike stuff.
I did manage to corner Keith long enough to get some vid footage of him going through the bikes, so as soon as I get home I'll get the vids up here on the blog. There's stuff he's designed into them that I didn't even know about; which he'll explain in the videos.
The party the last night was great again except I did manage to get punched in the face and kicked in the nutz by who knows who in the mosh pit, but you need to expect that if you want to get your "rock-on"
Big thanks go out to all the riders who came by to see us. To Steve... [official banshee party dude] don't ever change man!!
Special thanks to Hans, the lovely Marina, Frank, Peter, the beautiful Ellen, and Jovolin who gets to build up the Scythe and run it through its paces. The trip was tons of fun because of you guys - me and Keith can't wait to come back again.
I'm off to Montreal for another show ... look forward to seeing you if you 're coming to the BTAC show. We will be doing the dirt demo so if you want to rip on the 08 stuff come on by!!