The United States Bicycling Hall of Fame have announced that 20 early mountain bikes will be on display as part of their Mountain Bike History Celebration on Saturday, 5 November. The exhibition will be open to the public in conjunction with the museum’s annual induction ceremonies.
Among this year’s inductees is Mike Sinyard, founder of Specialized Bicycles. Sinyard has been a driving force in bicycling since he founded Specialized in 1974. The company recognized mountain biking’s potential early on and capitalized on the efforts of the sport’s pioneers in Marin County, California to bring mountain biking to the masses. Specialized introduced their Stumpjumper mountain bike in 1981.
Joe Breeze’s Breezer #1 will also be on display. This is regarded as the world’s first purpose-built mountain bike. Breeze built Breezer #1 in Mill Valley, California in 1977. Previous mountain bikes were an assemblage of used parts, and were generally called ‘klunkers’. “People suddenly saw a bright future for the nascent sport and I was happy to share my drawings and ideas freely with other builders,” said Breeze, who continues to design for his namesake company, Breezer Bikes.
Post show, Breezer #1 will become part of the collection of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Since 1986, the original Breezer had been part of the Oakland Museum’s “California – A Place, A People, A Dream” exhibition, documenting sports and activities invented, created or popularized in California. “The birth of mountain biking occurred right here in northern California and is a major part of American cycling history”, said Joe Herget, executive director of the US Bicycling Hall of Fame. “We’re pleased to host this outstanding special exhibit of vintage mountain bikes.”
Many of mountain biking’s early pioneers will be on hand for the induction ceremony, including Joe Breeze, Gary Fisher, Jacquie Phelan, Steve Potts and Ned Overend. Speedplay will sponsor the event, and will offer the opportunity for attendees to win a pair of the new Speedplay SYZR MTB pedals. Admission to the display and event at 303 3rd Street in Davis, California is free to the public.