SHOW REVIEW: Core 2010 Part Two

The second part of BikeBiz's show highlights from Core Bike 2010...
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You can read the first part of the review here...

Extra
Burley’s own Taylor Reynolds showed off the latest from the brand at the Extra stand, including the new D Lite. With new and improved features, including a more comfortable seat and enhanced aesthetics. Burley’s lines are currently used at Center Parcs. The One child Solo model now has improved suspension, while the Urban commuter marks a new segment for Burley.

Jango’s folding range was being demoed to dealers seeking a folding brand. Boasting quick folds (half folding in a mere two seconds) the bikes are narrow and lightweight, meaning that when folded, Jangos are easily carried. Five models make up the range. Extra had representatives from Cane Creek over for the show who were keen to emphasise the low stock-in needed to cover any headset requirement, whether old or new to market.

Despite being a relatively new standard to market, 28 different configuratons are already exist for tapered headsets. Cane Creek solves all possible combinations with just four top cups and six bottom, lowering the required stock commitments.

Merida
The good looking Merida Time Warp, triathlon and time-trial frame has what the firm terms the ‘Holy Trinity’ of features – strength, stiffness and a light weight. The Merida O.Nine is the successor of the Carbon FLX, created using hard technical data from a ‘black box’ device, which provided essential data used for the improved O.Nine, a bike that Merida describes as the world’s fastest, stiffest and lightest.

Having picked up a Eurobike design award last year, Merida is brimming with confidence about the Birzman product range. With product fit for the workshop and consumer, the brand’s catalogue includes ten-function carbon multi-tools, ultra light mini pumps, tool chests, and that award-winning Dragonfly chain tool, with the range designed to take advantage of the workshops increasing importance. Such is the demand for the product that several tools were reported ‘missing’ during the course of the show.

The Alpina range of helmets and eyewear were also a focus at Core, with the helmets sporting an all-round-the-head fit – rather than just a front and back fit – for added comfort.

SealSkinz
Like Cordee, SealSkinz enjoyed its debut showing at Core this year. As well as a chance to showcase its range, SealSkinz also launched five new cycle products at the event, including the eye-catching winter Handle Bar Mittens. Tapping into the ‘80s vibe, the lobster construction mittens use SealSkinz’ patented waterproofing with breathable membrane technology. The mittens also boast an extended cuff for additional protection with a reflective trim on the back and a digitised palm for grip and durability.

The mitten is joined by the new Peaked Beanie, with an added peak to additional protection from pesky rain and low sunshine. Available in black and a variety of sizes, the beanie has a micro fleece lining and the breathable garment is water and wind proof.

Three revised products were also launched at Core: the SealSkinz Winter Cycle Glove, the Extra Cold Weather Cycling Glove and the Activity Sock. It also stocks a number of other ranges for the cycle market and beyond, with cross-overs into the various outdoor industries. Each and every product includes that SealSkinz tech with a seamless three-layer construction – an outer, a waterproof highly breathable membrane, plus an inner lining. The brand, with its manufacturing base and HQ in King’s Lynn, Norfolk, has also relaunched its ranges in easier-to-understand categories – now essentially following the seasons.

Paligap
Muc-Off tells BikeBiz that it has teamed up with the Force India Formula One team this season, providing a nice marketing boost for the firm. In terms of product, the firm showcased a new cycle Cleaner Spray that can be topped up with refills, cutting down on packaging and set to arrive in stock this month.

Torq’s range of performance nutrition is joined by an Organic Mango variation of the Torq Bar, and a Banoffee flavoured Torq Gel. BikeBiz can confirm that both – first seen at Cycle Show last October – taste as advertised. Saris’ new no-fuss Solo got an outing at Core, too. The simple, easy assemble rack boasts injection- moulded arms and legs, super-strength and all for a mere £45. The Cycle Ops’ Joule computer range was also showcased. The training-centred products provide customisable dashboards for riders to manage their data as they wish. Also from the Cycle Ops stable, the PowerTap range featured at Core, utilising cunning wireless technology that lets them link up with products from other manufacturers like Garmin. Even more cleverly, the info is coded and so won’t get mixed with data from other nearby wireless machines.

Other Paligap highlights included new road and MTB wheels from Richie, and the impressive new carbon Litespeed models. Quintana Roo’s new triathlon range garnered plenty of attention too, with Eurobike gold award winner CD01 featuring the lowest drag coefficient ever. Clothing from Sombrio and Kona included handpicked UK relevant product, while Kona’s bike range now includes three UK specific rides – the Bolt, Blink and Buffer.

Silverfish
In stock now at Silverfish is RaceFace's new light freeride crank, the SixC. The super-light, yet no compromise build weighs in at 760 grams for a triple-ring package, while a double ring and bashguard package is also on offer and weighs 730 grams. That's not all of the new product from RaceFace either. Fixed gear riders have been granted a tough crank dubbed the Decadence, which can be paired up with the brand's new styled and coloured Turbine chainring. Both Shimano and Truvativ Turbine rings are also soon to be available.

Finally from RaceFace, Core Bike provided the brand with an early chance to show off its new downhill-suited Atlus stem. Through a bit of clever machining the stem's reach is extendable from 30mm to 50mm. Generating the most interest in the Silverfish suite was newly on-board brand Evoc. The German baggage manufacturer surprised many with its range, which covers everything up to padded bike bags capable of hosting even the burliest of builds.

Unique to Evoc's top-end backpack product is a 'spine plate', designed to hold the rider's posture within its limits in the event of a crash. As you'd expect, Evoc's packs are loaded with features, including fluid storage and dispensers, helmet straps and plenty of extra storage. The range will be in stock at Silverfish from late February.

The Sock Guy took a large presence at Core Bike too, having flown in from the States to introduce a number of new items, including arm warmers and shoe covers. A key advantage to retailers with all Sock Guy product is that, due to the mix of materials blended with Spandex, stores need only carry two sizes.

Upgrade
If you’re seeking an alternative to basic Shimano and Sram gearing stock, Upgrade has come to the rescue with a new brand, shown for the first time at Core. Microshift is a Taiwanese brand, brought in to offer retailers a competitive solution to mainstream groupset stock, minus the compatibility issues.

The range sits mid-level in terms of performance, though Upgrade staff have tested how effective it is in competitive situations and have reported it will also stand up to sustained all terrain use. Lezyne surprised many at the show by venturing into hydration backpacks and panniers.

Beginning at £39.99, Lezyne's answer to a hydration backpack on a budget offers a two-litre capacity and a whole host of innovative storage and clever features. Included on all chest buckles is a handy built-in whistle designed for attracting attention on the trail. The remaining three models, ranging up to £94.99, all carry flexible aluminium strips, which are designed to mould around the rider's shape. The three-litre tank capacity of the Great Divide backpack gives weekend warriors a great solution to long-distance ventures. Storage for tools, laptops and on-the-trail snacks is more than taken care of.

Tourers and commuters are looked after with Lezyne's new product, too. The Rack Caddies come complete with a rain cover and will retail for £39 to £54 depending on the capacity.

Windwave
Taking pride of place at the entrance to Windwave's stand was the newly announced and Core-debuted Traitor Cycles fixed gear bikes. The samples of these bikes had only arrived with Windwave a few days prior to the show's kick off, though the few models that were on show were enough to see order requests placed at the Core Bike event.

Windwave marketing manager Dan Jones tells BikeBiz: "Traitor's range will begin at around £600, which will buy the customer a Reynolds or Columbus tubed bike. Frame and fork kits begin at around £299 and we'll see Traitor-branded aftermarket components trickle through during 2010."

Colnago's focal point was a singlespeeder too. The Master frame and fork set, due to retail for £1,549, had been built to show off some of FSA's top-end kit, as well as a smattering of Windwave's other product. FSA's vintage-styled Gimondi crank was just one of items laced to Colnago's top of the line track frameset.

Marzochhi's 2010 line was also on show, though the main changes here were not immediately noticeable. The 2010 line, however, has shaved weight and thanks to three quality control checks before a batch leaves the factory, the forks all now carry a three-year warranty. What's more, the range should require less servicing as brand owner Tenneco has ordered each fork to carry more oil than ever before, meaning service times are extended.

Lucozade took an entire room at Whittlebury hall, bringing along one of its sports scientist staff to discuss with dealers how the line can assist cyclists in training. New to the brand was a line of recovery product designed to restore an athlete post exercise. All product is now packaged as cycle friendly, with a bottle cage sized hydration drink now available.

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