Kids Racing is 3 years old! 2018 was quite a year...
We are up and walking, sometimes running and pedalling our first bike - yes, Kids Racing is 3 years old! Most of you will have worked out by now we are big fans of innovation, this year has been our biggest yet for new products developed (67 at the last count) and released under our own brand HUPcc. Can’t quite believe HUPcc is just 18 months old!
We’ve been out on the road again in 2018 with the pop-up shop all over the UK and exhibiting at the 3 big UK industry shows; London Bike & Triathlon Show, CycleShow NEC and the Rouleur Classic. We plan to continue this in 2019, as alongside our own children’s racing, this provides a unique chance to speak to parents and kids for real feedback and discussion. You won’t find us in our Ivory Tower, telling you want you want, rather providing what you are asking for.
It was fantastic to take in some of the biggest race events too, like the North West Youth Tour, Mini-Roubaix and the European Youth Tour, Assen - rare experiences, that all the kids love taking part in. Cyclocross racing in Belgium was really special too, alongside visits to EuroBike, Ronde, Paris-Roubaix, Tour de Yorkshire and the DVV Trophee.
Alongside our clothing developments, 2018 also saw the launch of our bike component range, including our HUPcc cranks, carbon rotary seat posts, narrow/compact handlebars, short stems and lightweight saddles. These have allowed us to greatly improve the specifications of our custom-built bikes - reducing weight, improving fit for even smaller riders and increasing the range of gearing available. No wonder we’ve had a record year in our workshop. We've stopped counting the race and championship wins, those that know, know!
It's also been a productive year on our quest to change the bike industry from within. We've always considered the industry to have neglected the needs of kids. Consulting with several brands like Scatto, Kuota and Microshift has born fruit with new framesets and groupsets suitable for kids now in production. We have more top-secret and exciting bike news to come in 2019 too. I don’t see a time when we will stop developing, improving or evolving. Much more to come...
We are growing quite fast, 2 became 4 in 2018 and we plan to hire more staff in 2019 too. Some of that requirement stems from our reputation spreading abroad with our bikes and kit used worldwide in every continent now from South America to Russia and down to Australia. It’s been great to see our bikes and clothes in some far-flung countries.
Our new for 2018 HUPcc Italian and Triathlon Collections have also been a big hit, everyone loves their HUP Trisuits and Warm-Up Jackets! This range will be added to in 2019. Alongside our own brand, we’ve also welcomed some more great names to the website and pop-up shop like Oakley, Kinesis, Recon, Fulcrum, Miche and Ashima to name a few.
So what does 2019 bring? More of the same. First new products will be launched in January. No time like the present. We will also be launching our custom clothing service officially (this has actually already started for a few lucky clubs!) to provide game-changing customised children’s clothes to Cycling and Triathlon Clubs and Teams - so look out for #HUPcustom in 2019. It's time kids in clubs had access to the best, avoiding a cartel of suppliers ripping parents off!
A big thank you to all our HUP Ambassadors who've a done a fantastic job promoting our brand this year. It’s been the first year for the scheme and it took us a little by surprise the level of demand for it. We are the first to admit, we didn’t really have enough resources to dedicate to it, as the business has grown. Next year will be different, the scheme will have less members which will allow us to dedicate more time to their activities.
Big thank you also goes to the Clubs and Coaches we have dealt with this year with our Discount Scheme and at our pop-up shop events. We all share the same goal, to make it easier for kids to be involved in sport and to stay involved, against the tide of screens and social media. Look forward to working with you all again in 2019.
Finally, thank you to all our customers and friends for all your support, we are very grateful for the loyal following from so many of you. At the end of the day, we are just two parents with kids, trying to get it right, improve things and move kids multisport forward. There is so much more to do yet. Have a fabulous Christmas and lets do it all again in 2019...
#HUPcc #TeamHUP #HUPcustom #ScattoBikes #KuotaBikes #KinesisBikes #Triathlon #Cycling