i am not the type of person to toot my own horn but every once in a while i get an email, voicemail or letter from an ira ryan cycles customer and i am proud to say that i built that bike. this is one such email. along with it was this photo of the bike as it was intended to be.

Dear Ira,

I LOVE this bike!  Everything about it.  I have put close to 200 miles on it and feel I have given it a good work out.  After the initial nervousness about scratching it or hurting it in some way, I gave it a real good ride on my birthday January 29th.  I rode alone and pushed myself.  I chose a route with some good climbs and tried to go as fast as I could to not feel old (just turned 37).  Well the bike is just solid and fast.  I felt invincible in my own little world as I climbed out of the saddle, the bike wanting to just go, go, go with each pedal stroke.  It is so damn comfortable that 40 plus miles at 17.6mph wasn’t so bad.  I was waiting for the back pain but it never came.  It was my best birthday ride to date.

The bike is absolutely stunning to look at and I enjoy cleaning it and looking closely at all of it’s nuances and details.  I almost crashed Facebook I think when I posted photos, the gushing response was so great.

I am so pleased to have arrived at this place in my bike riding hobby.  The year of waiting and studying and fine tuning my tastes and desires was an amazing experience I will never forget.  My choice of you as builder only got stronger as the build came closer.  I always knew you were the person who could deliver my dream bike.  Your love of steel, Italy, Eddy Merckx, fenders are the things which set you apart.  I am happy to have met you and spent time in your shop and I am incredibly proud to ride your bike.

Thanks for an amazing experience.

Mike T.

meanwhile, back in the shop. i have most the show bikes back from paint and have the pieces cut for my jigsaw puzzle crate to get all the goods down there safe and sound. the boys from signal cycles and i used the pickup truck to git-r-done this weekend. as the time grows shorter and the irons get a little hotter, i can’t help but be excited for the show in austin, texas. having never been to texas before it only seems right that i be driving down in a big truck stuffed full of bikes. there may be some country on the airwaves and an ice-cold shinerbock in my hand once we cross the state line.

it has been a bit of a madhouse to get it all together but i just heard today that tony pereira will also be showing up for the weekend in the lone star state. tony and i have joined forces to make the new rapha continental bicycle and are both proud to have it on display in the rapha booth at nahbs. our bike is the culmination of thousands of miles ridden and hundreds or bicycles built by tony and myself.  the responses for our conti bike have been great and it has been the most popular of all the rapha collection bikes. please come by and talk to tony or myself if you get a chance to come to austin.

rapha is also unveiling the continental film documenting a 5 year project started by daniel wakefield pasly. it will be amazing! it will be showing thursday night if you are in town.

aside from the files, i have been able to get out a handful of hours in the week for some riding. i have decided the paris-brest-paris ride would take too much time away from ira ryan cycles so i have decided to pull the plug so i can stay on top of builds and plan some smaller adventures around the region. the sun has been out a little, the legs are feeling better and we have one king kong classic in the record books for 2011 already.

we have new kit on the way but i need some folks to help out and preorder some jerseys if you want to represent the ira ryan cycles style this spring. the kits are from vermarc and feature short sleeves, full zippers and tons of quality style. i made a special page just for them over here. i will need to have all the pre-orders by mid march to get the jerseys in time for early summer racing.


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