I have been getting several requests for State Champ jerseys. So to answer the general question, no we are not doing State Champ jerseys anymore. I do have artwork and would be happy to pass it on to anyone who wants to do it. Also, there is a place in Fremont that can do 1 offs.....
The other question I get is why. Well I think I blogged about this before but I will again...
As a sponsor, we purchased and sold the jerseys as a goodwill gesture. We sold them for our cost, which meant that we actually lost money when you count in the fact we had to carry inventory and the associated revenue cashflow reduction. And business is all about the cash flow.
95% of the cyclists who bought the jersey were great and very appreciative. But the other 5% and a small but significant number of cyclists where not. And I am not talking about the cyclists who were impacted by a mistake we or a vendor may have made (1 set of jerseys by Champion Systems came w. Orange instead of Gold). I am talking about the ones who called or emailed and complained that the jerseys cost to much, demanded we should give them jerseys for free or complained that we didn't have a their exact size. And generally, it wasn't 1 of those complaints: it was all 3. Unfortunately those also tend to be the people who then complain to their friends.
At the end of the day, we are spending money to generate positive press. If the impression people have is negative then it isn't worth it. It's unfortunate that for us a very small, but vocal, minority made a program I happened to like become a liability. But there you go.
I do hope to one day bring the program back.. maybe when we are at a point were we can promote the program ourselves to counterbalance the inevitable few who feel entitled to spend other peoples money but not their own. Or, frankly, if enough people shout out that they liked the program and thought it rocked then we may do it again. It is, after all, about the positive press.
Which brings me to another, related but different side not. Appreciate your team managers. We just got in our cyclocross kit and I grabbed myself 2 jerseys and some bibs. As I did that I realized that I have been wearing last years kit until last Thursday all year, with the exception of 1 jersey. I also have been riding the Seigler Aluminum rather than the Carbon. Why? Because other guys have needed stuff and I've redirected my allotment to them.
Yet I know there are guys on the team who think I must be making bank on the team. And I know that every team manager has a contingent that is convinced the thier team is a big money laundering scheme. I am sure that does happen. But my experience is that a) those same people very rarely contribute enough time and energy to the team to have any freakin' clue what goes into running a team either in terms of finances or time and b) most team managers end up spending their own money to cover shortfalls i.e. clothing order, etc.
Running a team tends to be a thankless task with the added bonus of being accused of embezzlement. So were am i going with this? Just a suggestion that the next time one is tempted to complain about how their team is run or how much money their manager must be skimming why not step up and find out what really goes on? Why not offer to use your credit card for the next clothing order? Why not put on your team race and cover the permit costs? In otherwords it's easy to complain when your it's someone else's reputation or money that's on the line.
And just so you know I am not taking about you. You are great. I am talking to you over there. yah you. You suck. But you there... you are fine.