LAS VEGAS, NV (BRAIN)—Retailers carved up Bootleg Canyon on the first day of Outdoor Demo with the expectation that retailers will be in full force come today.
GT was handing out its Force Carbon Pro for demo, which delighted GT's director of product development Mark Peterman. The Force Carbon Pro weighs a little more than 26 pounds spec'd with Shimano XTR and new Fox Talas (QR thru-axle). It retails for $5,999.
"Demo's a place for us to allow potential and current customers to sample our new products. A lot of shop guys come out and ride stuff they normally don't ride," Peterman said.
Santa Cruz was showing off its newly redesigned and lighter Nomad. The toptube is now hydroformed without the weld down the seam. It retails for $1,850 (frame and rear shock).
Santa Cruz is also in its second year offering a cyclocross bike. Santa Cruz marketing manager Scott Turner said sales have been good for this bike. The 3-pound frame retails for $850.
"People are totally digging it," Turner said.
"We love demo day. It's a chance for dealers to come out and ride the new stuff. It's a lot different than being indoors," Turner said.
WTB was unveiling its first new saddle shape in a few years called the Vigo. The high end saddle retails for $180.
"There's a lot more support than the average race saddle," said Dain Zaffke, marketing manager for WTB. "A lot of people get a high end saddle that's way too minimal, that's designed for a Tour de France rider and not your average anatomy. I imagine it's going to be real popular with the XC, endurance crowd."
WTB will also have five UST tire options this year, as opposed to just one a year ago. "I'm really happy about it, because I think it's something that was really lacking," Zaffke said. "A lot of shops and riders were asking for it."
WTB's goal for 2009 is to really make a bigger push into the tire market. "Northern California is our zone," Zaffke said. "We do pretty well in tires there."
Lots of the buzz came in the form of two words: Lance Armstrong. Rumors are swirling that he'll be racing in the cyclocross event on Wednesday night.
"Straight from the plane to the 'cross race, which should be interesting," said Masi's Tim Jackson, commenting on Armstrong. "He can ride a road bike, he can ride a mountain bike, but can he ride a cyclocross bike?
"I've had one retailer tell me that ever since Lance announced he's coming back, he said he hasn't been able to keep road bikes in stock," Jackson said. "He can't build them fast enough."
Armstrong's comeback doesn't just benefit Trek—the brand that Armstrong rides.
"When Trek sells a lot of bikes, we all seem to sell more bikes," Jackson added.
For more on the Outdoor Demo, be sure to read Wednesday's Show Daily issue at Interbike.