Oct 11, 2012 article & images by Nick Salazar

This is what greets you at the Northern corner of the expo. The Ironman Village, however, has grown beyond one small field and now winds around several plots of land on Alii drive.
This is what greets you at the Northern corner of the expo. The Ironman Village, however, has grown beyond one small field and now winds around several plots of land on Alii drive.

Ironman Village in Kona is always a fun area to watch. Like any major race, Ironman Hawaii draws a lot of manufacturers to come and display product. But being a World Championship venue means the excitement is that much greater. While this year's expo didn't contain any major product launches or teasers, we did have a lot of fun seeing how the Village is growing year over year. Enjoy the gallery!

Tags » hawaii2012
  • This is what greets you at the Northern corner of the expo. The Ironman Village, however, has grown beyond one small field and now winds around several plots of land on Alii drive.
  • This poster is a perfect metaphor for the triathlon experience. Come to Kona and you can have a free training ride with the heroes of our sport.
  • Specialized is doing a great job of helping educate people about what makes their product great. They had a small fleet of S-Works Trivents to demo for people who want to know what the experience is like.
  • Also exciting about the Specialized camp: the Clash of the Titans set to happen on Saturday. The battle is going to be epic.
  • Speedplay had a small rainbow offering of pedals to show off.
  • This special Zipp clock was going to be raffled off and given away.
  • Reynolds is trying to increase their presence in triathlon, but I haven't seen them do a very good job of educating people why their products are unique and worthwhile.
  • I'll let you come up with your own caption on this one.
  • Sarto keeps pushing these Liger bikes, which to me are as hiliarious as the discussion of Ligers in Napoleon Dynamite. I'm not sure who is buying bikes with these paint schemes, and whether they think it's cool or facetious.
  • This is the Liger saddle. Um, wow.
  • Profile Design is doing a lot to push their new Aeria bar, and I'm glad to see it. It's a very good bar, and a platform that I hope they continue to develop over time.
  • This is Profile's new HC bottle, an awesome BTA product. It looks awesome.
  • The HC bottle also comes with this mounting bracket and special cage, with a computer mount hanging off the back.
  • The Cervelo P5 has been scarce in media circles, but there were lots of them at Kona. Looks like Cervelo has been reserving all their production for paying customers. Can't say I blame them, but I'd really like to see one of these bikes at TriRig HQ one day.
  • Okay, one of my complaints about the P5 is that I think that the fairing on the Magura brakes is ugly. It's just ... ugly. I MUCH prefer the P5-Three, which has a UCI-legal fork, no fairing, and is only about one Watt slower than this version. And I'm willing to bet that swapping that Magura for a TriRig Omega virtually eliminates that gap. Not to mention, a cabled brake would preserve compatibility with Shimano's Di2 brake levers.
  • Here's another angle of the P5-Six. I think it looks weird. Note that this version only has two of the three 'beard' pieces that make up the Magura brake's fairing. But I saw several P5's in this configuration, with the top piece missing. Maybe there's an issue with that piece falling off, or being difficult to keep in place. In any event, I know the solution: stick with the P5-Three and ditch the fairings!
  • The Aduro aerobar is one very slick piece of kit. It's a great addition to the P5. However, its drawback is that you have to cut the steerer tube to size in order to mount it. That means no micro-adjustments of the bar stack after it's installed. There are still adjustments that can be made, but you do lose that option.
  • So, I love the TorHans guys and what they're doing in terms of product development, but I think this is a very weird application of their VR bottle. It was designed to face the other way, mounted on the seat tube, filling up the bottom portion of the main triangle. But you can't do that on a P5 because the bottom of the main triangle is already filled in to some extent, and doesn't come to a point. This just looks weird. Someone please take this off before my head explodes!
  • Zoot has made a big splash in the sport, and has some very cool Hawaii-themed shoes in town.
  • Perhaps the weirdest presence at the expo was ... the World Anti-Doping Agency. I don't like to make political statements on TriRig, but I'll just say it felt weird to see WADA promoting itself at an expo of consumer products and services.
  • The 2012 Ironman Village. It's a fun place to visit during race week.
  • There are a LOT of shoe companies that seem to be coming into the sport. I don't know much about Ecco's BIOM line, but I know that I like things that are orange.
  • It's always cool to see Mark Allen on race week, and he tends to be pretty visible. He invested in his own booth this year, to promote his coaching services. I'm happy to give him a plug - Allen is a big part of why the sport is as popular as it is today. He's a legend! Check out 'Mark Allen Online' for his services.
  • On Running is another shoe company coming into the tri world. They have an interesting cushioning concept.
  • Here is a demo of On Running's 3D cushioning concept.
  • Walk around long enough, and you'll spot lots of pros. Jesse Thomas was around saying hi to the Specialized crew, resplendent in his signature Aviator shades.
  • Oakley was on site with lots of equipment to create custom shades.
  • This is the Racing Jacket (formerly known as Jawbone), in a huge selection of colors. Guess which one is my favorite.
  • Linsey Corbin gets a custom-painted Trek with some small extra decals. This is a replica of the bike she will race on Saturday.
  • The Montana-Made Corbin has a custom little decal with that personal motto of hers.
  • Bontrager had a lot of their new Hilo shoes on hand. These things are wicked light, and basically follow the mold that Specialized originally set when it released the original Transition.
  • Newton had all these swanky cruiser bikes on display, just for fun.
  • Among the entrants to the shoe biz is former Ironman World Champion Normann Stadler, in town to promote the new Woolf shoe brand.
  • Norman was wearing the rainbow-colored shoe ...
  •  ...  and there's no doubt who this particular shoe belongs to.
  • I've gotta say, the Woolf color scheme impresses me. Big time.
  • Conrad Stoltz is best known for his absolute dominance in XTERRA racing. The guy is a force of nature in that discipline, and known simply as 'the Caveman.' Stoltz and his wife Liezel are newlyweds! I saw them just after they had been engaged last year, and Conrad described their relationship as 'my greatest victory.' Congratulations!
  • Stoltz isn't racing on Saturday. He's just using his time on the island to train and support some other Specialized athletes.
  • Ben Hoffman is also taking this year off of Kona. He's training, relaxing, and enjoying all the island has to offer.
  • Probably my favorite decoration on the island this year is this series of plinths lining the road that leads into the finishing chute. Each plinth has the image of a different Ironman World Champion, with information on the year(s) they won, and the finishing time(s). It's a rather beautiful sight, and one I'm happy to leave you with as our last shot from the expo. Stay tuned for some more coverage this week, and race images on Sunday morning after the race!

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