After many dedicated years, you deserve your retirement!
We cyclists all have tales to tell, and here’s mine. In 1998, we had these strange looking, Specialized Body Geometry saddles show up at the shop. The sales rep waxed poetically about them. He told us these were the “New Thing”. In an industry full of “New Things”, including regularly reinvention of the wheel, I was highly skeptical. What could Specialized know about bike saddles beyond slapping their logo on the side?
“Lighter is better” I believed! My worn and well-enjoyed Selle Italia Flyte TI railed suede saddle was comfy! I had saved up my meagre bicycle mechanic’s salary to buy it. I was proud! One day, the Specialized sales rep suggested I try the BG. I looked at him with disdain! I was mortified at the thought! Give up the Flyte!? No, I think not! The Flyte gave my bike some pizzazz, and those saved grams were worth it!
After a very a short conversation with my girlfriend, she insisted I give the BG a whirl. How bad could it be?
I installed one on my Specialized Stumpjumper. The saddle covered with black vinyl, was way too plush and was a boat anchor. There was nothing sexy about the thing! Thank goodness my butt would cover it, saving me any embarrassment when my riding chums saw me perched awkwardly upon it. I rode on it for a few weeks and thought very little of it at the time.
This was 1998. The MTB Ontario Cup race at Hardwood Hills was coming up. I needed to do my best! I gave my Stumpjumper a full service. I was ready to rock that course! The saddle? I pulled the Flyte out from my “Box of Bike Bits” where it have been enjoying a short reprieve. I quickly took the BG off and re-installed the Flyte with care, making sure to brush it’s suede finish. It was time to get back to riding a real saddle and race my best!
I went for a training ride…..
Out onto the road in front of the shop, I headed towards my usual training trail, known locally as “Hardy”. That Stumpy was light, efficient, and a sheer joy to ride (1993 Stumpjumper M2 in Dark Black, I really loved that bike). I stopped at the first stop sign. The saddle felt too high. I lowered it and rode on. Now it was too low. I raised it again. I couldn’t figure out what was going on, but I was numb in all the wrong places. Surely my much-loved Flyte couldn’t have been bad!? It was broken in! It had never let me down! I rode on.
I had ridden a total of 1.2km (we know exactly how far from the store the Dairy Queen is!) I turned right around and pedalled back to the shop, standing the whole way. I threw the bike up on the workstand in disgust and proceeded to pull the Flyte off…. and re-instal the BG which had been unceremoniously thrown onto a greasy workbench. I was perplexed! I went straight back out for that training ride without incidence.
I have never ridden anything other than a BG saddle since! They are a sexier now, (thanks for that!) and much lighter (Yay!) and have gone through many obvious improvements. These days we don’t carry any other saddle in the shop!
Without a BG Saddle (I rode on a few early models, eventually settling on a Romin, then recently switching to Power), I don’t know if I’d be riding today! Our business and my career have been enhanced, in a large part due to your innovatons. I no longer race, but I am now a Certified Body Geometry FIT Specialist, which, as you know, all starts with the saddle! Many of our customers now take the Minkow Wedge for granted, but your contributions to our beloved sport are not lost on us!
Thank-you Roger. You have earned your retirement! I look forward to enjoying more of your photography!
Trying to find something witty to say…… Here goes! “Many asses have you to thank for their cycling happiness”