During the award ceremony Sunday afternoon, Don Walker announced that Indianapolis will be the location of the 2009 North American Handmade Bicycle Show. “It’s a great venue, plus I live there,” said Don Walker.
This fourth NAHBS has been said by many to be a coming of age year for the show, with exhibitor and attendance records shattered and an amazing excitement and buzz on the show floor. The standard of bicycles presented at the show seemed to have taken a step up from last year in San Jose, with many builders going the extra mile with their show bikes. The result was a feast of creativity, craft work, and healthy doses of humor and soul.
More than 6800 people streamed through the doorways of the show, which at one point on Saturday exceeded capacity, forcing the city fire marshal to order the doors closed to keep people out. In addition to the usual array of builders who've supported the show along with component suppliers such as Chris King and White Industries, industry heavyweights SRAM and Shimano also had booths to display their wares. Shimano also provided important sponsorship along with Chris King and Portland City Commissioner Sam Adams.
Suppliers used the show as an opportunity to meet with the builders. SRAM OEM account manager Mike Stejskal said, “In one day here yesterday I had more valuable customer interactions than I have in a week at Interbike.” Linda Brown, representing the U.S. distributor for Continental Tires, Fizik and other European brands, also told me she received valuable feedback on the U.S. bike market that she forwarded back to Europe.
2009 2008 NAHBS Awards
Best Lugged Bicycle - Bruce Gordon Best Fillet Brazed Bicycle - Dave Kirk Best TIG Welded Bicycle - Mike De Salvo Best Paint Job - Brian Baylis Best Carbon Fiber Bicycle - Nick Crumpton Best Titanium Bicycle - Black Sheep Best Road Bicycle - Bruce Gordon Best Track Bicycle - RetroTech Best Off-Road - Engin Best Tandem - Calfee Best New Builder - Courage Best City Bike - Ahearne President Walker’s Choice - Naked People’s Choice - Naked Best of Show - Naked
Watch this space for followups from the 2008 NAHBS.
Photo Credits: Hummingbird saddle/Independent Fabrications by Cecil Reniche-Smith; Sweatpea chainstay by Gino Zahnd; Thien Dinh of Road Bike Review by me.