The 18th annual Sea Otter Classic is set to kick off next week in Monterey, California with another comprehensive round of road and mountain races and events. Along with its status as a traditional early season open, though, Sea Otter continues to maintain its place as a premier venue for manufacturers to provide an early look at upcoming new products.
This year’s event will host nearly 250 exhibitors, including major bicycle manufacturers such as Trek and Gary Fisher, Specialized, Giant and Cannondale, all of whom should have demo bikes on hand in addition to upcoming new treats. A slew of component companies will display their wares as well, including SRAM, Shimano, Fox Racing Shox, Race Face, Ritchey and Reynolds Cycling. Even smaller niche brands will be on site such as BMC, Cervélo and others. In fact, it’s almost easier to list who won’t be there than who will be.
We’ve already gotten a small taste of what’s to come: RockShox will show off a redesigned Reba chassis including its slimmed-down Maxle Lite 20mm thru-axle system; Ritchey will introduce two new Break-Away frames and a number of new components; Ellsworth will unveil its revamped Moment all-mountain platform; and Thule will launch new hitch- and roof-mounted racks.
We’ll have to wait and see what else will be on hand but rest assured that it will be well worth the patience. In the meantime, feel free to check out last year’s coverage for a taste of what’s to come.