Here is the bike Seven friend and sponsored-rider Mary McConneloug rode at the Beijing Olympics. It’s the same frame she rode at the Athens games four years earlier, making it the only mountain bike ever to feature in two Olympics. We are so proud of this bike, and Mary of course, because it proves that well-made things can last, even at the absolute top of the sport.
If you hadn’t heard, our friend John, who also happens to be a colleague, severed some tendons in his hand two months ago. A few weeks prior, John had taken delivery of a brand new Evergreen SL. Not just any Evergreen mind you, it’s custom painted, has a lust worthy build kit, and of course, was designed specifically for John. He was going to log so many miles. He was going to ride D2R2. He was going to know all of the dirt roads within a hundred mile radius of our factory. He was going to launch it off berms. He was going to zig and zag. He was going to be king.
One problem. When the good doctor sewed him back together, he sent him home with some disheartening news, “No bike riding.”
There are worse things that can happen, John would be the first to tell you that. Even still, taking away a prized new toy from a guy that loves to ride as much as John, changed his demeanor for a couple of days. We all felt for him. He looked pathetic. Typing with one good hand and one cast was a source of frustration. His beautiful bike was pilfered from the employee lot and put in the showroom to be displayed, adding insult to injury. All the while, each and every person at Seven continued to ride, as we always do, and left John behind. Poor John.
All the while John listened to his doctors and his physical therapists, and completed strength exercises day in and day out. It started with moving his fingers into a fist. He described how it felt, which made us woozy, but kept at it. Soon he had graduated to something called strengthening putty, though it was obviously just colored Silly Putty, that he would squeeze all day long, no matter how much we poked fun and how uncomfortable it must have been. Soon the cast was off, and he was typing again. He was making progress.
Yesterday, a day less than two months after surgery, John had a check up with his doctor. When he came back to the office he floated through the door on a cloud visible to us all and announced what the doctor had told him. “Go ride your bike.”
John makes riding more fun, and while he was missing out on summer rides, we were missing out on riding with our pal. This morning, we celebrated his return with an easy ride up and down the Minuteman Bikeway, and his smile was as big as it has ever been, as were ours.
Welcome back friend.
The level of customization here at Seven Cycles as witnessed by our Editions of One, as well as other unique creations we’ve highlighted, can sometimes overshadow the fact that we also spend a lot of time thinking about, designing and building race bikes.
Early on here at Seven, I decided I wanted a new race bike and after much deliberation on model and material, I decided on an Axiom SL, our benchmark model and in my opinion, the ultimate evolution of the titanium road bike.
With the help of Neil Doshi in our Performance Design Team, I worked through our Custom Kit exactly as you would, in order to come up with what you see here. Seven’s Fit Methodology (SFM), a comprehensive, data-driven system resulting from a 18-year study of ergonomics, biomechanics and kinesiology, drove the process that resulted in positionals and frame geometry perfect for me. The bike is not all that different in terms of fit from the bikes I have been riding and racing for years, but the small tweaks resulting from the process are a noticeable and quantifiable improvement.
The oversized tubing selected for this bike allows it to easily achieve the UCI minimum weight of 6.8kg. In fact it is lighter than both my previous carbon and aluminum bikes. As one would expect from a bike with such massive tubes, it has an amazing amount of drivetrain and torsional rigidity, tracks solidly over mixed terrain and unimproved roads and is abundantly confident during spirited efforts, changes in tempo and hard cornering.
The paint scheme is a peak at one of the many new finishing offerings our team is working on for the coming season. To my eye it appears forceful, yet refined and elegant. I let our own Jordan Low from our Paint Department choose the colors and could not be happier with the results.
Our oft repeated motto here at Seven is, “One bike, yours.” I could not be happier that this one is mine.
Our own Rob V, taking a last spin around the shop floor at Merlin Metalworks where he had been the first full-time employee. This is roughly a year before he founded Seven, and gave us all a place to pursue our maniacal bicycle dreams.
We do NOT, as a rule, ride around the shop floor here at Seven, not because we are so much wiser and more mature now, but rather because titanium shards will flat a tire faster than you can say, “Hey, you can’t ride that thing in here!”
You also don’t need to crash a bike into a giant mill or lathe too many times, before you decide you’re safer on the road, in heavy traffic.
This is a particularly amusing photo for us, because it predates all the work we’ve committed to building Seven. At this point, Rob hadn’t even decided to stay in the bike business. There’s no telling what was on his mind as he spun around the Merlin shop floor, and conveniently, he maintains he can’t remember.
Adam said, “The Wausau24 was a great event. Very well organized. The course was 11 miles of twisty, rooty, and rocky singletrack mixed with some nice gradual fire road climbs and fast descents. I started off first for our team and had laps at approximately 10am, 4pm, 8pm, 2am and 6am. The first two laps were great, no real fatigue. The third lap I flatted 2 minutes in and had to be careful. The fourth lap was amazing in the dead of night. The last lap was in the rising sun and misty conditions. Our team, Get a Grip Cycles, was able to clinch a podium spot for third place. Not bad for a bunch of 40+ year old men.”