Archive for November, 2012

The SouthEast Cycling Expo

Friday, November 30th, 2012

by Sean Hess, Team Rider and Manager for Strackacobra. Visit me on Google+ and Facebook.

So I went to the SouthEast Cycling Expo a week or so back and…

…it was soooo tiny!

Bob Roll at the SouthEast Cycling Expo in Orlando

Bob Roll at the SouthEast Cycling Expo in Orlando

It was held in the West Section of the Orlando Convention Center.  I had just attended a conference there a week before where we had the whole building, so I was thinking it would be something huge, like Interbike.

I took my 6-year old daughter because I thought it would be fun for her.

So we park, and we go up the elevators, and we walk the concourse over the convention space…and there’s nothing in the convention space.  Hmmm….

Then we go back down the elevators and walk all the way down through the building and finally, at the very end, is the Expo in a single convention room.  It took us maybe 20 minutes to walk around the whole thing twice.

There was a wheel dealer there, and I think an electric bike dealer, 5 hour energy, a bike uni manufacturer, and a few bike shops, and a few ride sponsors.  And a tiny, tiny little demo area (though there weren’t any bike brands at the show).

And there was Bob Roll, too, which was cool.

Positives and Negatives

It was a long way to drive for such a tiny expo.  It took longer to park and walk to the expo than it actually did to attend the expo.

There were no bike brands there, and for $25 to get in there should have been bike brands there.

But that being said, Bob Roll was a nice coup.

Going Forward

My guess is the organizers underestimated the time it would take to put the thing together.

I work with non-profits and it can take a year just to get a charity bowling tournament going.

It seems like I got the flyer for it in August…they probably should have started rounding things up a year ago August.

So next time they need to give themselves more time.

The second thing is they need brands.

Ever been to the Santos Fat Tire Festival?  Fat Tire in past years has had a demo with Specialized, Trek, GT, Giant and Cannondale all there at the same time.

You can’t have a bike expo without brands.  And if they have brands they need to have a demo area the size of a velodrome.  And kids need to be able to ride, too, not just 18 and up…not that there were really any bikes to ride.

I’m Being Bitchy Here

But it really was a good idea.  Central Florida needs something like this.

And it’s probably good to start small, get your chops busted, and do it better next time.

Besides, it’s not like there aren’t other things to do in Orlando.

We didn’t spend a whole lot of time there so I took my daughter to play Pirate Mini Golf and to Downtown Disney, and we had a great time!

See Strackacobra’s mountain themed T’s at



Carter Park 2012: Reinstating the Mountain Bike “Rules”

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Sean Hessby Sean Hess, Team Rider and Manager for Strackacobra. Visit me on Google+ and Facebook.

Normally I lose a tire in a race about once every two years.  This fall season it has happened twice in the last three races.

Lousy tires?  Nope.

Lazy rider?  Yep.

I used to replace my tubes before every race, but tubes are expensive.  So this fall I’ve been going through my “used tube” bag and running on those.

And they are fine in practice, and they are making me pay in races.

Two flats! Three races!

Before y’all get “You Should Go Tubeless” on me I’ll just say, “been there, done that.”  Tubeless tires have never worked for me.

But what has worked for me is something I informally call the “Rules,” aka, the “Rules for Mountain Bike Racing.”

They are:

1) New tubes before every race.

2) No downer books the night before a race.  I read On Her Majesty’s Secret Service by Ian Fleming one year before Bump N Grind…I was depressed the whole weekend.

3) Always make sure your warm up area is clear.

4) Always ride the first 1K of the race course before the start.

5) The warm up is the most important part of a good start.  I hate warming up.  I would just jump on my bike and go if I could.

6) Bring an extra wheel.  Bring extra everything.  At Tsali one year I broke a wheel in pre-race warmups…and had no replacement.  A five hundred mile drive for nothing.

7) No spicy foods the night before.  One year before the Chicksaw Race Classic my cousin took me to a Mexican place where we had some wild, spicy Tex-Mex burritos.  When the spices met the pre-race butterflies it made for one very long, very miserable night.  Now it’s bland, baby, bland.

See Strackacobra’s mountain themed T’s at