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NEWS, REVIEWS & INFORMATION

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With classics season looming and Cross World Championships this weekend, we thought we’d talk a bit about one of the baddest, most charming, most talented, best looking dudes to ever ride a bike.

Roger de Vlaeminck

“The Gypsy”

“Mr. Paris-Roubaix”

This is a Belgian who was only interested in soccer, right up until the time that his older brother, Erik, became a pro rider. Whether it was his competitive spirit, or something entirely else, Roger immediately picked up his bike and said, “Yeah, that sounds good. I think I’ll be a professional cyclist too.”

During his first amateur road racing season in 1965, Roger only managed to win one race.

“He’s no Erik,” the neighbors would comment.

During his second season, he won 25 times.

“Look at him go,” the neighbors now cooed.

De Vlaeminck continued to chase his brother, riding cyclocross in the winter and road in the summer. In 1968 he won the World Amateur Cyclocross championships in Luxembourg, the very same week that his brother became the World Professional Cyclocross...

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You know, some people think it’s gauche to paint a titanium bike. It’s clear to us, that they have never seen what Seven Cycles can do.

Our latest custom build is this show stopping Axiom S. The owner made some really wise decisions on part selection, and the end result is a durable bike with superior road feel.

This is a bike for someone who puts in a lot of miles.

We built up the custom wheels and the owner worked with Pedal Hard to get the fit dialed.

Hubs, headset and bottom bracket: Chris King

Rims: Hed Belgium

Spokes: DT Competition

Drivetrain: SRAM Force 22

Bar, stem, seatpost: Zipp Service Course SL

Saddle:...

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We're pleased to announce that registration is now open for the 2015 Mellow Johnny's Classic! This iconic race, held at Flat Creek Crossing Ranch, is one of the highlights of our year. Other than a couple pre-ride dates, this gorgeous private property is generally closed to cyclists. For local riders, this will be an opportunity to explore a world class trail system. Out of towners, here is your excuse for a weekend trip to Austin.

The 2015 Mellow Classic will be the second of the eight race TMBRA Texas...

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Oakley and cycling are fairly intertwined. Well, let me rephrase that. Oakley and anything related to eyewear are fairly intertwined. This is a company that has ruled the industry for the past 25 years, and continues to create innovative, coveted glasses for all types.

If you've been in our shop recently, I'm sure you've seen our giant Oakley build-out. We've invested quite a bit to offer the best possible selection of these best sellers, and are one of only 12 non-Oakley stores in the nation to offer such a wide variety of styles and accessories. Our products are constantly rotated to ensure that we always have the latest and limited on our shelves. In addition, we've got spare lenses, earsocks, bolts and frames, if you'd like to build a custom piece to match your new bike.

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Peter Finklea is a Mellow Johnny's institution. Not only is he exceptionally knowledgeable about all things cycling, Peter is one of the most humble, thorough, and hard-working employees we've ever come across. Currently managing our rental department and all of our warranties (A thankless job he handles with aplomb), Peter is a busy man. Learn more about our star employee below.

1.You've been in the industry for years now, can you give us a snapshot of your cycling related work experience?

I've been in the bicycle retail industry for almost 30yrs and have held several positions. A mechanic for the first 20ish years w/Sales mixed in (Austin). Service Manager for two years (Palo Alto). Purchasing of Parts & Accessories for six years (San Francisco & MJ's). And most recently Manager of MJ's Rental Dept. and Warranties.

2. What got you interested in bikes initially?

I realized from a very early age, bikes were the most exciting and accessible way to establish independence. Just get on your bike and go. In my high school years we had a Bicycle...

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Moots

Gravel bikes are interesting things. In the Venn diagram of cycling, they fit somewhere in that tiny space where road, touring and cyclocross overlap. While almost all bike shop employees have been thrashing their personal road bikes on gravel roads for years, the movement has slowly entered into the mainstream cyclist’s consciousness. Events like the Dirty Kanza, Rouge Roubaix, and even our own Graveltopia ride have helped introduce the consumer to the fun of gravel riding.

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Well, that was a whirlwind.

Watching the best in the nation slide around in the mud tells me that cyclocross is hard for everyone. As an age group rider, that's comforting in an odd way. The course is a dynamic thing. A second gained and a second lost.

Thanks to everyone who came out and supported the event. Enjoy our gallery of employees, pros and everyone in between.

Photos: Thomas Miller

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Mellow Johnny's Ft. Worth

We're so happy to announce our first expansion! Mellow Johnny's will be bringing its passion for bikes to the Clearfork Trailhead Development in Fort Worth, TX. This beautiful location is the trailhead for the Trinity Trails, and will allow riders to congregate and ride some of the best trails in Texas, directly from our new front doors.

Read the full press release below to get more details about this project.

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The great thing about Seven Cycles is that there is no price difference for going custom. Because each frameset is made by hand in the US, the builders can easily adapt to a specific customers wants & needs. This allows our sales staff to customize not only your component selection, but also how you sit on and interact with the bike.

Our latest custom Seven is an all rounder, created by a customer who likes to ride, but isn't a road racer. Going disc allowed for the use of the wider Hed Belgium + rims and gave the option to run larger tires for gravel and dirt rides. The Ti frame is bombproof, and the Ultegra Di2 drivetrain is a smart choice considering that the price jump to Dura-Ace doesn't provide an equal jump in shifting performance.

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Custom wheels are wonderful things. Lately, we've been making several pairs for custom bikes, road racers prepping for next season and touring cyclists traveling across continents. The defining characteristic of these custom wheels is simply that you, the consumer, choose the rim, spoke and hub combo. The parts are ordered by us and the wheel is built in-house.

Why go through all this trouble? Well, that answer is a bit more complicated than it appears. Obviously, there are those that simply want something aesthetically pleasing. A limited edition Chris King Sour Apple Hub will probably never come stock on any bike, but it's a beautiful thing.

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One of the many benefits of living in Austin, is that the winters are generally mild. We certainly complain a lot on our rare below freezing days, but at the back of our mind most Texans are well aware that we've got it pretty easy. Winter riding is a real option, and it doesn't require $300 soft shell jackets or ski pants. Temperatures can change greatly in the course of a few hours here, so packable, versatile clothing is the order of the day.

Two of our favorite pieces for winter riding are the Super Prestige Glove ($45) and Power Cap 2 ($25), both produced by Louis Garneau. These are items owned by most of the staff and provide just enough warmth to keep you comfortable in that 35-55 degree range prevalent during a Texas winter.

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We've just built up this beautiful, hydraulic disc Domane 6.9. With Dura-Ace Di2, and the IsoSpeed decoupler, this is a bike at the forefront of cycling technology.

Witnessing Trek invest the time and effort to make a disc brake road bike of this quality, it's hard not to think that this is the future of road cycling. As a shop full of cross racers, we're also hoping that Trek makes new versions of the Boone with the same thru axle design. Confident cornering and braking are practically guaranteed with this fantastic set up.

Check out the gallery below, then swing by the shop to see this beauty in person.

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Purpose built commuter bikes are elusive things. They come and go, each lauded as the perfect solution for the urban commuter. Kickstarter is awash with start-ups who each think that they’ve cracked the code.

What we’ve always worried about with these one off designs, is the day to day durability. If a bike is truly made for urban commuting, it needs to handle quite a bit of abuse. If your integrated lights fail, will small parts be available? If you forget to remove the integrated iPhone mount and someone steals it, can it be replaced? Urban cycling is rough on components and gear because a commuting bike exists towards the utility end of the cycling spectrum. A 10 pound Emonda is cared for, the tires checked and the chain lubed before each ride. A commuter bike is shoved into a rack at ACL, or left exposed to the elements while you are at work.

What makes the Trek Lync so appealing is its mix of forward thinking ideas, tempered by the business sense and experience of...

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This morning, Rolando Roman and the Texas CX Project crew hosted a preview of the CX Nationals course. We were lucky enough to be in attendance and able to take a few pictures of some of the key features.

Overall, the course design is extremely impressive. This will be a true test of fitness, and riders able to pace themselves on the back to back run ups of the bottom section will be able to ride away from recovering athletes on the N side of Andrew Zilker Rd.

We'll keep everyone updated throughout the build, and hope to have a filmed lap as soon as the course is complete.

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Cross Nationals

At Mellow Johnny's, we're sorta nuts for cyclocross. We watch European races with names we can't really pronounce. We listen to Flemish commentary and fancy that we understand a bit of it. We spend way too much time each Monday discussing the weekends events, and our managers pull their hair out each cross season trying to accommodate all of the day off requests. Needless to say, we're pretty excited that Cross Nationals is happening in our back yard.

Below is a list of events happening at MJ's over Nationals week. For racers, our service staff is prepped and ready to take care of all your needs. We're a ten minute bike ride from the course and are happy to dial in your race machine after every pre-ride. Our GM just told me the story of how he got on the podium at Cross Worlds in '06, and I work right next to an employee who was 9th at Road Race Nationals a few months ago. Our staff is full of seasoned riders just like these, who get overly excited talking about tire pressure and tubular cement.

Spectators, just sit back and enjoy the vibe. Cross is physically brutal,...

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