Around here, we’re big fans of people who push boundaries and challenge conventional thinking. That’s why our sponsorship of the Gates Center Track/River City Cyclocross team was a no-brainer; they combined single speeds and belt drives and introduced the duo to the world of cyclocross racing. And they did it with style. Here, in the third and final in a series of dispatches from the team, John Walrod takes the Succinct Trench for an unexpected ride.
Innovation is born from pushing expectations and refining design – two things that, I believe, NAU does while the rest of us sleep. In an attempt to match their constant innovation, I took it upon myself to do a little field testing of the Succinct Trench while on a recent rainy trip to San Francisco.
Here are a few images and my impressions of what turned out to be a superior garment:
I was in town with my crew for the Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships and to fly the flag for our Gates Carbon Drive/ River City Bicycles Team. After a few nights of heavy shenanigans that turned out to be less than performance enhancing, I was ready to go. An hour before the start I realized that I wasn’t exactly on the start list for this event, so I stole this guy’s number at registration and smeared my face with fake blood so nobody would ask any questions. The trench concealed my stolen number (666 – not kidding) long enough for me to negotiate a semi-sanctioned 667 (under the stage name Chet Texas).
It was finally time to start. The promoters had decided to do a “Le Mans” style start in which the bikes get left on the start grid and the riders march 1/4 mile away for a running start. While the other riders were forced to parade around in their lycra and look like racers, I was able to cloak myself in the woods and gain the holeshot:
Now, cyclocross is a brutal sport – aerobic, anaerobic, skills, variables, booze, all of it. After demonstrating dominance in both tactical and race situations, I chose to spectate for awhile :
Luckily for us, an astute spectator observed this and was able to collect some footage.
Overall, the NAU Succinct Trench Coat performed extremely well. Its split tail allowed me to run, jump, pedal, drink, and commentate all without a hitch. Believe it or not, it escaped the weekend without a single blemish (unlike me). I cannot say enough about how well it worked for concealing my identity when needed, acting as a dry seat, keeping the elements out, and adding that bit of stylistic flair that more traditional cycling clothing just can’t offer. Well done, Nau. Well done.