This week: a company profile of Taiwan OEM Merida; Hero Cycles acquires Firefox and rights to Trek distribution in India; the ‘Asia Bicycle Industry Alliance’ explained; Southeast Asian bicycle manufacturers growing business in western markets; global bike brands’ product managers nail down MY2017 planning in Taichung.
Amidst a top-quality field that includes four ProContinental teams, and with the absence of defending champion Rhys Pollock, Australia’s Drapac Cycling team is guaranteed a challenging week ahead if it wishes to focus its efforts on the general classification prize for a second successive year in this year’s Tour de Taiwan.
As professional road cycling continues to spread its global wings, it has been fascinating to witness the number of Asian, Australian and Kiwi cyclists breaking into the top echelon of professional road cycling; sometimes via quite long and convoluted pathways. Today, Cycling iQ looks at where “home” is for Asia’s top riders.
If there was a book entitled “How to monetize your brand loyalists – what every bicycle brand should do”, surely one of the chapters would relate to issuing a ‘limited edition’ frameset. There’s almost no better way to break through the already-fragile consumer rationalization of a well-heeled road cyclist who may already have a spare … Continue reading
A marked contrast hung over today’s final Tour de Taiwan stage. While the profile of the 126 kilometre parcours around Kaohsiung suggested no other possibility than a bunch sprint, the points jersey and general classification leaders had time advantages so tenuous that the entire race was wide open.
Following a ceremonial circuit of Tainan’s City Hall, the 85 starters competing in today’s sixth Tour de Taiwan stage would traverse a rolling 100 kilometres, before transitioning into a moderate final climb (300m elevation) with a steep pure-sprinter-unfriendly pinch at the end.
The articles at Cycling iQ fit into one of two core streams; the bicycle industry and road cycling in Asia. Though inextricably linked, the Tour de Taiwan once again facilitated a very visible confluence of these two streams; passing the sprawling headquarters of Merida Bicycles in Changhua County.
Saxo Bank, the only ProTeam present amongst the 19 participating teams at this year’s Tour de Taiwan, today got the stage win most pundits would have expected from the first division squad. Could the delayed “inevitability” of a Saxo Bank victory hint at a shrinking qualitative gap between Asia and Europe?
Possibly taking a leaf out of “How to dominate a stage race, by Andrea Guardini”, in-form Genesys Wealth Advisers all-rounder, Anthony Giacoppo, claimed the second of his Tour de Taiwan stage wins only three days into the week-long event. Fellow Aussie, Rhys Pollock (Drapac) slipped into yellow.
Veteran Hong Kong cyclist Wong Kam Po today confirmed the form that led to his 2012 Asian Road Cycling Championship win in Malaysia last month. Today’s second stage covered 112 kilometres (or 118.01 kilometres, or 135 kilometres, depending on the official communication) and included three categorised climbs – but none too challenging for a motivated … Continue reading