Saturday, November 19, 2005

 

Is it already Christmas again!?

Yes, Christmas is almost here. There is less than 40 shopping days left. The Great Escape has got something for everyone on your list this year. For cyclists, we've got lots of great deals in Trek Merchandise as a part of our "Trek the Halls" sale. Of course, there's always plenty of great ideas in the hobby shop for hobbyists both old and new.

Don't forget about our financing plans. They're a great way to relieve some of the stress from bills this time of year. Right now, as a holiday special, we're offering 12 months with no money down and no interest on Giant road bikes! Everything else can be financed at 6 months no money down and no interest. Come by and filll out an application, or swing by our website and fill one out online!

Enjoy this time of year with family and friends, and stop by to see your extended family over at The Great Escape, we're always glad to see you!

Friday, September 16, 2005

 

welcome back george!

Greenville celebrated the return of cycling star George Hincapie last Friday. Hincapie is the only member of Lance Armstrong's team that has ridden with him in all seven Tour de France victories. Hincapie won a stage in this year's Tour making him the first rider to ever win a stage while riding for Lance. Hincapie just recently made it back to the states after continuing his excellent racing season in Europe. The Greenville Spinners sponsored a parade down Main Street, and the mayor and other dignitaries came out to say a few words. In fact, Lance Armstrong himself made an appearance in order to congratulate Hincapie. Hincapie and Lance have been longtime friends, and Lance said he couldn't do it without Hincapie beside him. George is originally from New York but now lives on downtown Greeenville with his wife and new daughter.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

 

will lance do it?

The Tour has finally hit the mountains--in a big way. Both yesterday's and today's stages led the riders through some of the toughest climbing they will ride this year. Today's stage included the highest point on this year's Tour; with two category one climbs and one hors category climb. The hors category is reserved for the toughest climbs out there. Lance rode strong yesterday finishing second and regaining the maillot jaune. Today saw Lance sitting back and letting Vinokourov and Botero take the stage. The day finished with Lance just 38 seconds ahead of Rasmussen in second place.

Things have been crazy here around the shop. The Tour is stirring up lots of new interest in cycling which is great for us all! Hopefully I'll get to sit down later this week and post some more interesting stuff.

P.S. Tonight is our regular Wednesday night road ride. All are invited! The ride covers around 30 miles and averages about 17 mph. Come and join us!

Friday, July 08, 2005

 

debbie does paris

The Great Escape is thrilled to announce that one of our employees, Debbie Chapman, is headed to Paris in a couple weeks for the UCI World Championships. Debbie is an accomplished BMX racer. She rides for a team out of Shelby, North Carolina, and is one of three people on her team traveling to Paris. You can see Debbie and read about her riding in the most recent issue of Link Magazine.

Debbie has worked at the shop for a little more than a year now and is one of our top mechanics. She teaches a number of our general maintenance classes. Recently, Debbie has also began teaching a maintenance class just for the ladies. Its a great chance to come learn about your bike without the guys always trying to second guess you! Just swing by and sign up. All our classes are completely free and you don't need to bring your bike with you.

We expect nothing but a win from Debbie when she travels to Paris (ok, we also expect some cool gifts) and wish her the best of luck!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

 

a bit of a history lesson

It all started with just two young pilots uninterested in the corporate world. It's been a long ride to where we are now with three shops, a staff of over 50, and thousands of (hopefully) satisfied customers. But, it's an interesting ride nonetheless. . .

Our owners (Joe and Norm) met while serving together in Vietnam as Air Force pilots. Turns out the two of them actually trained together in Florida before heading overseas, but--as Norm put it--at that point they were much more interested in the local girls than they were in befriending fellow pilots. After arriving in Vietnam, the two of them ended up as next door neighbors in their hooch, and flew a number of combat missions together. Both pilots flew the Air Force's C-123K Provider transport aircraft. At this point, I'd like to brag on both of them just a bit and say that they each won the Distingished Flying Cross, and reached the rank of Captain before leaving the service.

After leaving the Air Force, both Joe and Norm went to graduate school and successfully earned their Master's Degrees in Business Administration. After graduating and locating in the Upstate of South Carolina, the pair opened the first shop in March of 1973.

After opening the Greenville store in March, the second store was opened just seven months later in Spartanburg. Anderson came along last, in early 1974. All three shops have gone through a number of growing pains since then in order to get to the locations they are in today. Spartanburg moved four times before reaching its current location in its purpose built building on Highway 29. Greenville is in its second location and is housed in an old grocery store facility. We went from being one of the smallest shops in South Carolina to being one of the largest with over 30,000 square feet in our Greenville store!

Since opening we've seen over 100 bike shops come and go in the area and we're quite honored that consumers have placed their trust in us these past thirty years. It really has been the only thing that has carried is through all the ups and downs of the retail world. Where would we be without loyal customers? Who knows, but we wouldn't he here enjoying the job we all love today.

A bit of a rant though. . .I've been here almost two years now and I have to say that it hurts my feelings a bit to hear that people sometimes don't like to shop with us because they feel like we've only prospered by bullying others out of the market, or that a shop so large has lost its charming, personal bike shop feel. I can say that personally, I work my tail off for my customers (the vast majority of which I know by first name), and I hope that the majority of people will continue to see us as a shop to be trusted. We like to think that we offer the best service around, and I can promise that if you feel like we went wrong somewhere, we'd love the chance to make it right. Hey, nobody's perfect.

Here's to the next thirty years!

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Congratulations to Lorenzo Bernucci riding for Fassa Bortolo who won his first professional victory today by winning stage six of the Tour de France! It counts as his first race win because each stage of a Grand Tour is considered its own one day race. It was quite a hairy finish, but Lorenzo was able to stay on his bike and take the win. Lance Armstrong is still holding onto the maillot jaune with a 55 second lead over Greenville resident George Hincapie. It will be great if George manages to race the next couple of weeks just as strong as he has started! Jump on over to our webiste at www.greatescapebikes.com for a full recap through cyclingnews.com. and plenty of other great Tour information.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

 

and the wind changes

Its an interesting road out there. Things are always evolving: technology, records, expression. Thats the key one here. The means of idea expression and communication have evolved. The worldwide blogospere seems to have exploded and we'd hate to get left behind. We must admit we aren't always the most willing to change(we're just now getting computers), but it has been said that if you aren't changing, you are dead. In the interest of pedaling on for many days to come, we embrace change and take up our own position on the growing blogosphere.

It's rather unclear at this point just what our blog might or might not contain, but hopefully it is enjoyable and insightful. We welcome your input and your comments. We'd love for you to swing by our website (www.greatescapebikes.com), and we'd like it even better if you came by the store for a chat.

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Its Tour de France season again and Lance is in the maillot jaune. Here at the shop, we're celebrating with Trek by launching the Lucky 7 scratch and win game as well as yellow-tag savings across the store on Trek accessories (we've also got a pretty cool table of components and stuff on sale at 25% off). Come by and find something you can't live without!

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