Olivia Westall in her new Lindsey Vonn custom race suit during her visit to Spyder.
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), holds an annual charity walk in Denver to raise money and awareness for children with diabetes. Earlier this year, a nine year old girl with Type 1 diabetes, Olivia Westall, emailed J.J. Collier, the head of our design team, to inquire if the same people who designed her Spyder Race Suit would also agree to design her JDRF team’s T-shirts for the charity walk.
[We later found out this was an idea Olivia casually devised and resolutely presented to her parents at the dinner table, and her mom – although skeptical at first – agreed to go along with it.]
We happily accepted the job.
JDRF’s mission is an important one and Olivia’s team sets a high goal for donations and sponsors. Plus, she is an accomplished ski racer, having won most of the races she’s entered so far. We at Spyder like to get behind that sort of thing!
As a show of our support and appreciation for Olivia and the organization she represents, we decided to invite Olivia, her mom Bekah, sister Alex, and a few friends (skiers and speedfreaks the lot of them) to the office for a tour last Friday. It was one big smile-filled meet-and-greet, and a mutually awesome experience for everyone involved.
Olivia, her family, and her friends during the visit.
When all was said and done, the kids were tired, the adults were exhausted, and everyone left with with their arms full of Spyder swag. Olivia made out even more handsomely, as we presented her with her very own Lindsey Vonn custom race suit (signed by Lindsey, of course).
Presenting Olivia with her Lindsey Vonn custom race suit.
Those of us who have been given the opportunity to work at Spyder know what a special thing it is to walk through the office doors everyday and be a part of the legacy and evolution this brand. It is always cool to be able to share that energy with our fans, of any age, and, if by simply going to work we can help support a good cause, then we are happier than ever to do what we do.
-Matt Strackbein, Sr. Production Designer
More photos from Olivia’s visit after the jump…
What do you get when you take the only Le Mans car of its kind in North America and Spyderize it? The Audi R8 LMS you see here. Our VP of Design and Merchandising, J.J. Collier, worked with its owner and driver, Alex Welch, to dial in its exterior design.
J.J. on the project:
“When I first saw the car it was raw carbon fiber. Some would argue it was perfect just like that. However, in the interest of protecting the surface and making the car more menacing and fast-at-a-glance, we wrapped it in Spyder DNA. The bold asymmetrical strokes and mixture of matte black, reflective red, and exposed carbon are all in keeping with Spyder’s seasonal design tenets for Fall 2012. It is simply the raddest canvas we could possibly have had to convey our core brand aesthetic.”
You know how much we love our Audis, and participating in this project was a dream come true.
AUDI R8 LMS SPECIFICATIONS:
OWNER: ALEX WELCH
DRIVER: ALEX WELCH
· Country of origin: Germany
· 1/1 in North America with 40 cars produced world wide
· 1st in class and 3rd overall in 2010 at 24 hours Nuremberg
· Successor: Audi R8 LMS Ultra
· Naturally Aspirated
· Mid, longitudinally mounted
· 5.204 liter / 317.6 cu in displacement
· Valvetrain: 4 valves
· Power 500 bhp++
· Torque: 500 Nm / 369 ft lbs
· Carbon fiber
· Exterior Graphic Design by: Spyder Active Sports (Boulder, CO)
Spyder’s VP of Sales and Global Marketing Russ Rowan and the R8 LMS together at ‘The Quail‘ (part of the Pebble Beach Concours) last week.
More photos after the jump…
Our intrepid team has returned from Sturgis, and the tour was a resounding success by all accounts.
The experience was especially enjoyed by our European guests, who will likely return in the future for some repeat performances.
Stefan Herzog, CEO Sportscheck & Detlev Maass, Vice President, Sportscheck
Stefan and Detlev are aggressive and competent motorcyclists, and always push the pace on the mountain passes. A first trip to Sturgis for both riders, it probably won’t be their last.
They enthusiastically embraced the trip’s theme, “Today we Ride.”
These final two photos were taken on the second to last day in Steamboat – all of the guys got to attend the Rodeo that we were following for eight days. They finally caught it!
Signing off for now from Motorcycle Land…
The partnership shared between Spyder and the U.S. Ski Team has spanned over three decades and has accounted for an abounding number of World Cup and Olympic Medals. A big part of that partnership is focused on creating the fastest speed suits in the world – athletes travel up to 90 MPH in a typical World Cup downhill course, and aerodynamics matter.
Also important is designing speed suits that are compliant with the stringent rules set by the Federation of International Skiing (FIS) for air permeability (so that in the case of a crash, friction is mitigated so as to prevent the suit from literally melting to the athlete).
In order to ensure that the suits Spyder designs for the U.S. Ski Team strike a perfect balance between speed and permeability, we conduct annual wind tunnel tests – a couple of weeks ago, we took Spyder Athlete and U.S. Ski Team Speedster Steven Nyman to the Low Speed Wind Tunnel (LSWT) in San Diego to run a battery of tests on various suits at various speeds and under various other conditions (we can’t tell you – it’s a secret).
Spyder Athlete Steven Nyman in San Diego’s Low Speed Wind Tunnel (okay, we used a little Photoshop).
Continue reading after the jump…
Josef Laggner, one of our guests on the Sturgis Trip, is a restauranteur in Berlin, Hamburg Bonn, and Austria. He wanted to join us on the tour because – as he explained it – “Once-in-a-lifetime you have to be in Sturgis.” His favorite part so far? “All of it!”
We like many things about Josef, and his authentic motorcycle riding apparel is no exception.
It’s no secret that our CEO, Tom McGann, is a huge motorcycle enthusiast. So it came as no surprise when he told us that he was going to fire up the Land Yacht and lead a group of friends from Spyder HQ in Boulder up to Sturgis, SD for the 72nd annual rally.
Over the past few days, the group has made their way north out of Colorado, through Wyoming, and into South Dakota. Below are some of the images from the road.
Preparing to depart Spyder HQ in Boulder, CO
Gearing up at Eagle Rider in Denver, CO
First night stop in Lusk, WY with the Land Yacht running support for the group. Next stop: Deadwood. Antelope and open road await.
South Dakota border. Hermann Kapferer and Gotthard Haider have known each other since they were six years old (they both grew up in Austria). “Gottie” is a crazy artist who specializes in making nativity sets. Hermann – aside from being a ‘bad to the bone’ Harley rider – holds down a day job at Burton Snowboards’ European GM. Hermann surprised Gottie with this trip for his 60th birthday.
Stay tuned for an update from the rally itself…
Later this week, an intrepid, international group – led by Spyder CEO Tom McGann – will embark on a cross-country, two-wheeled trek to the Mecca of Motorcycles (a.k.a. Sturgis, SD).
They’ll be updating us along the way with stories and photos from their adventure, so stay tuned.
Oh, and if you’re on the wide open road between Colorado and South Dakota, keep an eye out for the Spyder Land Yacht and a bunch of beautiful bikes (hat tip to Thunder Mountain Harley Davidson in Ft. Collins, CO!).
Tom will be riding this beauty, no doubt.