Future says it's likely that a record number of visitors crammed into Birmingham's NEC over the weekend to attend the seventh annual Future bash.
So crammed in fact, that many visitors couldn't get into the show for some hours, leading to a lot of disgruntled punters. Many left, vowing never to return. Some had pre-purchased tickets.
Organiser Kris Hollund said:
“The numbers attending this year's Bike Show surpassed our expectations and were a huge increase on last year. We are exceptionally pleased with the huge response.
"We do however appreciate that some people had to queue for a long time, and some didn't get in. We are very sorry that people were inconvenienced. We are already looking to increase the size of the event next year due to the huge response at the weekend, and we are thinking hard about how to manage the ticket and entry procedures more effectively next time. I'll be urging people to buy tickets in advance next year to be sure to avoid disappointment.”
This year's show had fewer big brands displaying 'bikes on sticks'. The focus was more on 'events' to sit down and watch, married with the chance to pick up bargains from the IBDs present.
Middle market cyclists over the age of 18 would have been disappointed with Bike 2001 but the show has been steadily evolving into a show for a certain sort of demographic rather than a show for 'all cyclists' and Bike 2001 was clearly a hit for the target audience of MBUK-reading, key-chain clanking, Tioga-tyre buying youths.
"The crowds not only had the chance to buy the latest gear from the large number of exhibitors, who pretty much all reported had a good show, but also were completely entertained by stars such as Martyn Ashton, Martyn Hawyes, Steve Peat, Will Longden, Scott Beaumont and long list of mountain bikers that graced the BSX and Trials Arena's."
For a cross-section of views on the efficacy of Bike 2001, go to the bulletin board where there's a very lively discussion from trade visitors, one of the biggest exhibitors (Giant - who give the show a big thumbs up, but would prefer a date change), and a first-time IBD exhibitor (Mike Poyser of SuperCycles in Nottingham).