Farewell, you Hammersport year. And welcome to 2018!

Machs gut, du Hammersportjahr. Und herzlich willkommen, 2018!

Outside, the winter weather is showing its lousy side, inside it's warm and your legs feel thick from the #Festive500 of the last few days. We allow ourselves a short, necessary break. Exactly the right opportunity to take a look back at a cycling year that we will not experience again in Düsseldorf. But fear not, there are no big blues, and 2018 will also have a lot to offer.

The bike in the cinema

Our first highlight of 2017: the New York Bicycle Film Festival as a guest in Düsseldorf. An inspiring collaboration with the Open Source Festival team and the Düsseldorf Art Cinemas. Creative films about bikes from a wide variety of perspectives, the New York founder and jack of all trades Brendt Barbur visiting our city, four fast-paced days with overwhelming feedback from visitors, in short: great fun. Looking back, it was also an important approach for us to combine cycling and culture in order to get things moving in Düsseldorf. Thanks to everyone involved and supporters, filmmakers and passengers on the trip. And out of the hat thanks again to Ole Hellwig for the brevet film, which even lured the mayor into the hat on Sunday.

A new fair is in town

Exactly 100 days before the start of the Tour de France, Cyclingworld, a consumer trade fair for everything to do with bicycles, opened its doors in the Böhler Areal at the end of March. The extraordinary location, a colorful mix of small, exciting brands and established top dogs, a successful supporting program with excursions and a cross race, spring weather that couldn't have been nicer and a decent rush of visitors from the entire region: you can do that after the start call measure.

Those responsible have proven that an innovative trade fair for cycling enthusiasts is not only possible in Berlin. We had fun being responsible for the rides together with our valued colleagues from listnride and wahoo and being able to show some brands from the hat's portfolio with Pelago, Veloheld, Bombtrack, Ridley, Soma and the DeFeet socks and our own hats . The new edition will be available in April 2018, one can be curious.

Cycling as culture and support from England

The hot phase around the tour then began at the end of May to the beginning of June: the exhibition "Mythos Tour de France" started on the ground floor of the NRW-Forum, Rapha opened a decorative pop-up store on the first floor. While the city was hosting the Table Tennis World Championships, the Grand Départ was clearly visible on the banks of the Rhine. Commissioned by Rapha, the Leipzig ERTZUI filmmakers created a two-minute portrait of our city as part of the global "Rapha rides..." series, which should also be a good ambassador for Düsseldorf in the years to come. We had fun being able to be there together with Steffen Weigold as local representatives in terms of cycling culture. The four trips that we organized for our English colleagues on the Sundays before the tour were among our biggest challenges so far due to the size of the group and the differences in performance levels.

In the course of June, the number of beats increased noticeably, cycling aficionados and journalists from all over the world came to us and were happy about the atmosphere in the cap and the many opportunities to meet like-minded people for a chat. We have already described the days surrounding the Grand Départ in detail for those who have not read it yet or would like to read it again: https://www.schickemuetze.de/der-grosse-aufbruch-nach-der-tour-de-france/

And what did all this bring?

Nice to see that many of the press reviews, many magazines and blogs found our activities related to the Grand Départ worth mentioning and reported about us, our store and our brands. The chapter about the cap festival as part of the GD review in Tour Magazine is an example. *curt*

The title of our own conclusion, "The great awakening - Düsseldorf after the Tour de France" was bluntly optimistic, after all it was already obvious in July that the critical tones about financing, going it alone and the moderate weather performance would remain part of the local political banter. It remains to be seen how others who are looking back at the year classify the Grand Départ. The countless spectators along the route, the exuberant atmosphere, side events such as the power plant concert, cooperation with neighboring communities, in short everything that made a wonderful calling card for our small Rhenish metropolis worldwide and even for cycling enthusiasts in the USA or Australia "Dazzeldorf" made a household name should not be forgotten when considering value and cost in conclusion.

But it also seems important to us to remind those responsible in the city and administration of the sustainable task of the Grand Départ: the change in mobility should be initiated, cycling should be significantly strengthened. If you really want to get more people on their bikes regularly in Düsseldorf, the existing, limited area has to be redistributed and car traffic restricted. Visionary concepts are needed that combine urban living, shopping and leisure time enjoyment. If Düsseldorf wants to be a city with a lively structure, local trade now needs creative support in order to maintain a sustainable environment in times of massive sales shifts towards online trade. In the future, our city center will have to meet other requirements than being easily accessible by car. Plans from the car lobby box are not enough to ensure quality of life and modern infrastructure in view of particulate matter pollution and gridlock.

From big politics back to the little cap

In the increasingly digital times, in which everything is always available everywhere via the Internet, it is not a matter of course and for us it is a compliment to be noticed and taken seriously as a shop and meeting place for cycling enthusiasts from collectors to professional athletes. The positive feedback that we have received again this year from partners and customers, as well as the attention that our campaigns have caused in the social networks, have shown us over the past twelve months that our commitment is valued. It means a lot to us that cycling clubs and cyclists from further afield go on tours to Düsseldorf to view our range, to buy something and/or to enjoy coffee and cake. Greetings and thanks especially to Cologne and Essen.

In 2017, we ourselves organized more than fifty trips covering over 4000 kilometers and countless passengers. For our small team, this was a real tour de force alongside our main areas of shop, workshop and café. Thank you to everyone who helped us this year so that even the largest trips with very different levels of participants could be mastered smoothly without any major problems. And the best part was that almost everyone had fun. Sometimes even from the torment.

Let's look forward to a new year in our city. We will organize many road bike trips, want to give more space to the topic of gravel bikes with our gravel tours, underpin the Cologne-Düsseldorf city partnership with return visits and implement many other plans. And above all, we will continue to be creative with our range and build many beautiful new bikes.

We say thank you to everyone who has supported and accompanied us over the last twelve months, on the bike, in the shop, anywhere. Our very special thanks for the joint development work goes to Dieter, who withdrew from the cap this year for personal reasons.

We had a lot of fun with Uerige, Ritchey Logic, Wahoo, Genesis Bikes, Cafe Du Cycliste, Lake Shoes, Pelago, Giro Cycling, Veloheld, Bombtrack, Brooks, Fizik, PEdALED, Royalbikewear, POC, HJC, Lezyne, Knog, Kask, BlueOn , Lucho Dillitos, GoodSport, Clif Bar, Ahrberg, DeFeet, Soma, All City, De Marchi, Panaracer, Apidura, pOcpac, Shimano, Sram & Campagnolo, Sealskinz, GripGrab, KlingKlang, Swrve, Ashmei, Ridley, Silca, Omnium, Aurora Collective, Abus, Fact, KuBikes, Covadonga, Velo Orange, King Cages, Thei-Sprint, Radsportland, Rouleur, Soigneur, Tour, Cycle, Fahrstil, Spoke, Rennrad, Roadbike, Far Ride, Peloton Magazine, listnride, Rapha, ERTZUI, BFF, Radsportland, Pathfinder Giro, El Flamingo Films, Cycling Club Düsseldorf, Scuderia Südstadt, DSD Köln, Essener RG, PSL Technik, BBC Bespoke, NRW Forum, Denk3000 and the Free Bikes campaign, colleagues from the many good bike shops in Düsseldorf and many more. Here's to a successful 2018.

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