At Sea Otter this month we asked about a dozen mountain bike industry insiders a simple question: “What are the things you want to see more and less of from the industry over the next year?” Some of the answers we got back were a little surprising but for the most part, it was really cool to hear that most of us, insiders and consumers alike, seem to be on the same page for 2016.
Oh, and it turns out even people in the industry itself hate new and competing standards as much as the rest of us do.
Ken Avery (Vittoria VP of Marketing and Product)
More: Vegetarian burritos. More people getting back to the reason they started riding. I want more people to ask themselves, “Why did we start doing this?” Fun.
Less: New “standards.” Consumers should stop stressing about the tech that goes into bikes and equipment and just ride.
Bobby Brown (Marketing Specialist, Maxxis)
More: Flat pedals and party pace rides.
Less: Cynicism towards technological improvements. We all ride and are looking to better our rides.
Sal Crochiola (Jamis MTB Product Manager)
More: 1-by drivetrains with larger gear ranges. Clean, simple designs for mountain bikes.
Less: “I’m not hating on anything right now.” More people on bikes is a good thing; let people ride what they want.
Ellen Kast (General Manager, American Classic)
More: World peace, and bikes.
Less: New axle specs. Let it settle down for the riders. Simpler is better!
Jim Katz (Breakaway Communications for Bolle)
More: Integration and standardization among bike parts.
Less: Brand-specific parts and standards.
Darren Kinnaird (General Manager for Crankworx)
More: Exposure and prize money for women.
Sarah Lukas (Thorpe Marketing for Todson/Topeak)
More: Canyon bike sales in the USA. Women on bikes.
Less: Electric mountain bikes.
Pat Mayben (Primal Wear Event Director)
More: Women’s-specific events, both road and mountain. More fun.
Less: Red, white, and black bikes, apparel, and accessories. Less emphasis on sufferfests and cries for extreme “epic” rides.
Justin Roberts (Mongoose Brand Manager)
More: 29ers, short travel 29ers.
Less: Fat tires, full suspension fat bikes.
Rachael Walker (Brand Manager, Hope Technology)
More: Women on mountain bikes!!
Clayton Wangbichler (Public Relations, WTB)
More: Cooperation between trail builders and land managers.
Less: Homies riding gloveless.
Your turn: what do you want to see more and less of in 2016?