Sorry to all, especially to Steven - I meant to say Head Judge STEVEN Maasland, not PETER! -Dan Borden, red faced in Brookline, MA
Hi all, I wanted to send the CR list a report with my impressions of the 2004 Larz Anderson National Bike Show, which took place yesterday. These are my own personal thoughts and impressions, and I apologize in advance for any errors and omissions!
The day couldn't have been nicer - starting without a cloud in the sky and ending with cool breezes and the sun still shining o'er the Larz Anderson Museum of Transportation outdoor concourse - the home of the Larz Anderson Bike Show.
The bikes - and the people - who make, collect and love them were as brilliant as the day. One needed sunglasses to view the brilliance of Peter Weigle's recently built road frame, with its stunning white and blue paint job (my vote for Best Paint) which Peter brought to the show to display before it was shipped to its new owner on CO. And right next to Peter's beauty, Peter's trip companion, the inestimable Richard Sachs, had his personal road bike on display - impeccable, traditional-style workmanship in the famous Sachs Red, Black and Yellow color scheme was brought streaking into the modern world with the most up-to-date frame materials and Campagnolo Record Carbon and DT components. The drool factor was high on that end of the concourse, I can tell you that. I pointed out both Peter and Richard to my 13 year old son (who rode his OT 1988 Wicked Fat Chance to the show), as two of the premier bicycle builders in the world today, and seeing their bikes on display did nothing to tarnish their reputation.
Co-Chairman's Maurice Bresnahan's many bikes on display showed his range of interest and grand taste for the old world masters - 1939 and 1951 Bianchis in celeste, a 1959 Masi Special, a 1972 Masi Track, a 1978 italian Masi GC, and others. I apologize to Maurice and the list in advance - many details of these bikes now escape me, but no details were lost on head Judge Peter Maasland, who spent some time with the crowd talking thru the details of some of these beautiful examples of cycling history. Maurice's collection is one of the finest in the land, and I salute him for his contribution to our hobby.
I was stunned by the quality and rarities of Ken Denny's many contributions to the concourse show. I mean, flat out, slack-jawed stunned. Ken brought two 1973 Colnago's, both of which had been built for display at the 1973 NYC Bike Show. The first, a Super with the loveliest and most detailed pantographing I think I have ever seen, was an absolute knockout, literally, took my breath away, and was one of my votes for best of show. The second was a 1973 Colnago track model, again with outstanding pantographing (on the rims, too?!?), and another possible best of show. The NOS, original condition of these two Colnago's and how they had been maintained in this condition was really hard to fathom (in a good way, that is). It was as if they had just rolled out of Ernesto's office. Another one of Ken's collection was a 1984 Cinelli Laser Evolutioni, lovingly restored by Ken using Jim Cunningham's group at CycleArt. This bike's artful blending of aerodynamic form and function is unparalleled, IMO. For example, the integration of the stem into the headset/headtube seemed to me to be a design and engineering marvel and just so "eighties", if you know what I mean! All in all, I just cannot say enough wonderful things about Ken Denny, his collection and his willingness to share his knowledge with the people at the Larz show. Thanks, Ken!
There were many other beautiful bikes and friendly people that I have no room to acknowledge here. As I understand it, CR listers Jerry Moos with his wife Liz were there, and also Tom Rawson from California. I am sorry I didn't get to meet you all and others. I spied our friend and world class resource man Sheldon Brown in attendance, as well.
Bottom line - the Larz show was a great success - the best yet! - and I believe those who were there would wholeheartedly agree. The show is also a work in progress, which, with everyone's support, will grow and hopefully, just get better and gain in attendance year after year.
We all want to acknowledge and thank Peter Naiman and Maurice Bresnahan, the co-chairs, for their hard work and dedication, and to Peter Maasland, for agreeing to act as Head Judge. I hope others will chime in and publish their own impressions of the show to the CR list.
Thanks for listening.
-Dan Borden in Brookline, MA