Wold Ranger wrote:
Thought Spooky were all about Jump/4x/dual and DH not XC/trail?
Spooky is and always has been what we want it to be!
We invented the hardcore hardtail, and every spineless taiwan brand has been ripping it off for 12 years for pennies on the dollar. Why even bother competing with ripoffs of our own bikes? Why bother making dirtjump mountainbikes when a BMX bike is so much better?
In New England, Spooky was always one of the most dominant forces on the XC race scene. It's where my heart lay too. In our first year back racing we won more than a dozen races, a few state championships and a national championship. This year we are the title sponsor of one of the best elite road teams in the region. We had bikes with other companies stickers on them in the Olympics. Racing is my lifeblood. DH racing on the elite level is close to dead. The skinsuit ban killed it, as far as I can tell. We aren't making bikes designed for retards.
With all the hullabaloo about the global marketplace, etc, we have a larger market for $850 xc, road or 'cross frames than dirtump bikes. Except in England, "hardcore hardtails" are by and large bought and used by children with short attention spans... Kids don't value quality, and are too busy worrying about the latest fashions in pants and flat-brimmed hats to care who made their bike, and why it costs as much as it does.
If we want to make bikes for bike people (the only people worth caring about), we need to make the bikes that people who are as crazy about bikes as us want.
We race 4x and DH, And we build great bikes for our friends that race those disciplines. We've got a gearbox dh bike (that we raced succesfully last season), our own Gconn compatible gearbox to make it shift, and a "normal" dh frame that we are working on. They are projects that we are working on for giggles, but we have very little intention of ever really putting them into production, as the geometry and features that Pros want and need aren't really compatible with your average rider.
Instead of making a production DH bike, we are building a 140mm all-mountain bike for general production. Most of those bikes really suck, and unlike a good pro-level DH bike there is a market for them... We will also make a limited run of Metalheads this year, but the global market for a world-cup level 4x frame is pretty miniscule...
Spooky is about Doing It Yourself and creating a support network for your friends and fellow-travelers. Sales numbers be damned, we just want to make the best bikes we can, designed to win as many bike races as possible, and sell them to people who appreciate that.