Earlier this year, Brooks England, the Italian-owned manufacturer of handmade leather saddles, ramped up its marketing by inviting dealers worldwide to submit applications to be Dealers of Excellence.
Following submission and review, fifty dealers will be selected worldwide and will be rewarded with a not-for-sale limited edition white Swallow.
While there are only fifty white Swallows up for reward, there are 'star' symbols of recognition to be awarded. Rivet rankings will be:
1 Rivet for Good dealers
2 Rivets for Distinguished dealers
3 Rivets for dealers On the Rivet
4 Rivets for Excellent dealers
5 Rivets for Outstanding dealers
6 Rivets for Supreme dealers.
One through five rivets will receive prizes while the fifty selected Supreme dealers will receive the white Swallows.
The Dealers of Excellence program is not judged on sales alone. More essential to gaining a 'six rivet rating' will be a demonstration of "brand passion," said a statement from Brooks.
The Dealers of Excellence Award Ceremony held at Interbike Las Vegas saw three US bike shops gain the prized white saddles.
The 'six rivet' shops are Wallingford Bicycle Parts, Clever Cycles and Harris Cyclery, famed for its former mechanic Sheldon Brown RIP. The pic above shows Brooks marketing manager Andrea Menghelli awarding a white saddle to Aaron Harris, owner of Harris Cyclery.