The year was 1989. Bike shops were full of colorful bikes and aftermarket components. Neon was HUGE! Splatter painted mountain bikes were everywhere. The bike industry was definitely in line with the trends of the time visually. I had many great days working in the bike shop, but one day stands out in my memory and really was a turning point for the entire industry. One day, I came in to work after school. I walked through the back door and to the bath room to change clothes (Bike shops weren’t fancy with dressing rooms like they are now). Above the bathroom door was something hanging on the slatwall that I had never seen before (little did I know at that moment that no body had ever seen before). It was the first Rock Shox suspension fork!
Well, I had questions, concerns, scepticism, and marvel all at one time. The conversation around the shop was based around the fork being a new product that will never work. Why bother with suspension, it’s just a fad. But despite me being young and impressionable, I thought it was cool. Although, looking back, I wonder if it was strategically placed above the restroom on purpose? Never the less, there will always be cynics…I wonder what those cynics think today? This fork changed mountain bikes forever! First was a suspension front end, then a suspension rear end, and now the technology used in upper end full suspension mountain bikes surpasses your average car’s suspension. Thanks to Paul Turner (Rock Shox founder) for the gift you gave to us mountain bike riders!