So I have to say that my team has been crazy lucky in getting sponsors, big sponsors at that. Our major corporate sponsor is Dressel's Public House in the Central West End of downtown St. Louis, MO. It is one of the oldest pubs in St. Louis, opening their doors over 30 years ago. I feel like the atmosphere is a mix of old and new. You can go and get great get a beer pub food, but they also have higher end food as well. Their service is awesome as well. When my teammates and I go over for a few beers and some grub, we are often met by representatives from various beer and whiskey makers. These guys are awesome, often coming from over seas and tell you everything you could ever want to know about their product. Shoot sometimes they even might give you a free taste.
Our next major sponsor, and they are vital to our team, is Mesa Cycles. Without Mesa our team would grind to a halt. Everyone knows that you can find great deals online but the personal connection to the guys at the shop is what I really need. I really like to just go down there and hang from time to time, I hope those guys don't mind. I do like to do my own work on my bike also but there are times that I just don't have the time and those guys often times will go out of their way to get my bike back on the road asap. It is also helpful to the other guys on my team that are not as mechanically inclined as I am.
Then we have Specialized Bicycles. Man talk about a great company to get to work with. When I purchased my new bike last Spring I wanted a Specialized bike really bad, but they didn't have my size in stock, and I needed one in just a couple days. I am going to buy a Specialized Stumpjumper Evo 29er later this year. They only just came out this February, so I'm pretty pumped that I will be getting a very new bike. I have also been wearing Specialized S-Works Carbon shoes for the last season and man are they great. The sole is so much more stiff than my last pair of shoes, but the uppers are nice and supple and really form to the shape of your foot without having to use those oven fitting systems. I have also added one of Specialized's insoles to fit the arches of my foot better. One thing I noticed pretty quick after purchasing these shoes was that it straightened out my legs on my pedal stroke. What I mean by that is that when you look down and see your knee's going up and down, before my knees would make a figure eight like shape going up and down. This is less that optimal. So now I see that my knees go straight up and down, unless I am very tired and going up a very steep hill. Then they do tend to start turning in again. But I was amazed to learn that Specialized had built this shim into their shoes to fix most peoples pedal stroke. Seems like something that would be pretty easy but it took that outside of the box and innovative thinking of the engineers at Specialized to come up with it.
We are also lucky enough to be partnered with companies outside the sport of cycling. First is Quantum Solutions, a systems engineering firm out of Columbia IL. These guys do just about everything from work for Kraft, and Coke, to safety systems on oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico and Pacific Ocean. Then there is The Gateway Group, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, Computer Trade who recycles computer info, and electronics in an environmentally green manner. St Louis Gym Centre, which is my place of employment and were just nice enough to indulge in my passion outside of the gym. Foundation Grounds Coffee House, a very hip urban coffee shop. Buttonhole Chamois Cream, best stuff I have ever tried and cleared up most major undercarriage problems that I have had in a couple days.
Last is our team name, 708 Racing comes from 708 Urban Roadwear, a really cool line of clothes targeted at cyclists and hip urbanites.
Without these partners we would not be able to do what we plan on doing this year. They make this all possible and I am going to do everything in my power to make their investment in our team something they feel was well worth the money, time, equipment, and anything else. I am so excited for this year, I just can't wait.