It started with a kiss: Cyclists launch Cat’s Tongue

By Ben Delaney in Boulder, Colorado | Monday, July 30, 2012 11.38pm

How can you change a flat, then make out with your date without getting her clothes dirty?

This conundrum helped spawn Cat’s Tongue, a US-manufactured grease-removing wipe for cyclists.

Tom LeBlanc had used a similar product in machine shops for more than 20 years when he began dating — and accidentally smudging the pants of — Deanna Clarance.

“Our courtship basically began on the bike,” Clarance said. “On our first date, which was a bike ride followed by a drink, I got yet another flat tire. Tom, being the white knight that he is, fixed it for me but had nothing to clean his hands on except some grass. Fast forward to the end of our date and Tom made his move for our first kiss. Shortly thereafter, he whispered in my ear 'I think I got grease on your white pants.'”

Beyond keeping lovers’ hands clean, the Cat’s Tongue towels are also an effective cleaning solution for bike frames, components, tires and more. Packaged in individual packets for tucking in a saddle bag or in a canister for at-home use, Cat’s Tongue dual-texture towels are pre-moistened with a strong cleaner.

Cat's tongue comes in a canister or in these single-use packets: cat's tongue comes in a canister or in these single-use packetsCat's Tongue wipes come in single packets, like this, and in 30-count canisters

The couple are also keen to support cancer research, with 25 percent of every sale going to the Pan-Mass Challenge, a cycling fundraiser for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.

LeBlanc will be riding his 14th Pan-Mass Challenge this year.

“I started by riding with a friend who told me that the Dana-Farber gave him another year with his son, who passed away at the age of 3 back in 1999,” LeBlanc said. “Over the years, we've experienced so many stories that have shaped our efforts that we are perpetually committed to making a difference, wherever we can. Collectively we've raised, with our sponsors, over $125,000. Sounds like a lot, but we know we can do much much better.”

Cat’s Tongue recruited pro cyclists Tom Danielson and Jeremy Powers as endorsers of the product.

For his part, LeBlanc says Cat's Tongue towels have replaced everything else he used to use for cleaning the couples' bikes.

“No more hoses, scrub brushes, spray, splashes,” LeBlanc said. “I use them for everything to maintain our bikes.”

Look for a product review soon on BikeRadar.

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