Find Out How Two CU Graduates Started the Premier Bike Shop in Boulder
Quite often I get asked, “How did Boulder Cycle Sport come about?” It’s actually a pretty good story, I thought I would write about where we got the idea for Boulder Cycle Sport and why we chose North Boulder to open our first location.
Taro Smith and I co-own Boulder Cycle Sport. We met as undergraduate Kinesiology students at the University of Colorado in the early Nineties and both worked at a local health club called The Max. At the time we had started mountain bike racing and were soon traveling around the state racing in the once famous Colorado Off-Road Point Series. Over those years we always had the entrepreneurial spirit and were constantly bouncing new business ideas off each other. We almost opened a salad bar on The Hill in Boulder and even wanted to start a cycling sock company with one of our signature styles being argyle! Today you can’t go out on ride without seeing someone wearing some type of argyle cycling apparel.
After a few years of racing Taro took his entrepreneurial skills to the next level and opened several medical rehabilitation and sports science centers while getting his PhD at the University of Colorado. I, on the other hand, wanted to earn a living by traveling the world as a professional mountain bike racer. I did turn professional, but was not remotely fast enough to earn a living. In fact, I spent more money as a professional cyclist than I ever made. I don’t regret it at all. In fact, it was one of the best times of my life and along the way I met some amazing people who to this day are my best friends. During this period I also worked with IMBA doing cycling advocacy with the aim of getting kids to adopt cycling.
During my years of trying to become a faster mountain bike racer and while Taro was growing his centers and getting his PhD, we always stayed in touch and we see each other at various events and outings.
Fast forward to the fall of 2004. I was fortunate enough to move into a brand new town-home in the Holiday Neighborhood of North Boulder. Residential units in the area were being built and sold quickly, and thanks to a booming economy there were a slew of new buildings going up as well. One of those buildings was Uptown Broadway, future home to a hip Italian espresso bar called Amante Coffee. Knowing the northern end of town is the gateway to Boulder’s best road rides and most cyclists love a good cup of coffee, I thought the area would be the perfect location for a bike shop. At the time I had never worked in a bike shop, nor had I any ambitions of opening a bike shop. It was just an idea. You know, one of those ideas you never have the guts to follow through with.
As fate would have it, around the same time I was moving to North Boulder, I met up with Taro because he needed to pick up some used parts from me for his new cyclocross bike. As we talked about his new cyclocross bike and other things, I mentioned I was moving to North Boulder and casually mentioned why I thought the area was perfect for a new bike shop. His immediate response was, “Let’s do it!” I didn’t really think any thing of it because in the past Taro and I had always schemed other business ideas but nothing ever came to fruition. However, less than a month later we had a business plan ready to go and signed a lease on the space, which would soon become Boulder Cycle Sport.
It was all kind of a whirlwind. I mentioned my idea to Taro in October of 2004 and Boulder Cycle Sport was open for business in June 2005. Several years later we have two locations and more than 20 great staff members. Who knows what the future will bring!
Thanks for you support!
Two University of Colorado graduates, Taro Smith and Brandon Dwight, founded Boulder Cycle Sport in January 2005 in order to provide a community-based bike shop for all levels of cyclists. Since the mid-Nineties, Taro and Brandon have been avid cyclists and competitive racers. Taro holds undergraduate and master’s degrees in the areas of Stress and Exercise Physiology and a Ph.D. in Integrative Physiology. His professional background includes the development of exercise models of rehabilitation as well as product development and marketing work for various medical and fitness companies. He also conducts research in the fields of exercise physiology and immunology. Brandon graduated from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology in 1995 and was a nationally ranked professional mountain bike racer from 1999 to 2002. He is a three-time U.S. Cyclocross National Champion. With a combined 35 years of pedaling in Boulder, Brandon and Taro have deep roots and a vast knowledge of Boulder’s cycling community.